I find it infuriating that there's a controversy over vaccines. It's the first worldliest of first world privileges to opt out of vaccinating your child. The only reason it "works" is because the rest of us are doing what we're supposed to. Millions of parents around the world would give anything to be able to protect their kids from preventable diseases. But with all the loudly-expressed willful ignorance out there, it's no wonder parents have concerns. Let me (and science) tell you that those
fears you have when you vaccinate your kid are nothing to worry about. No, seriously. Like, you guys, I'm making a promise here (and so is science and logic and reason, but we can get to that later).
I have a 2-year-old daughter, and she has been fully vaccinated according to the
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccination schedule. It wasn't even a question for me that she would get all her shots on time and as recommended by people who are way smarter than me. Like most children, she did not experience any adverse reactions. It was painful in the moment, sure, but she got over it really quickly. The best part, however? My daughter will never get any of the devastating and even deadly diseases that we've managed to virtually eradicate in this country thanks to the medical marvel we now call vaccinations.
Vaccines are an uncomfortable but necessary part of childhood in this day and age. As a parent, you have better things to do than worry about vaccination and any of the following:
Exposure to mercury is the most common fear of parents. Vaccines do contain preservatives, but
thimerosal has been out of the picture since 2001. Thimerosal breaks down into ethylmercury, but it doesn't accumulate in the body. Taking is out is just a precaution (and likely a response to the albeit unfounded mercury concerns). Anything else in there (aluminum, for example) is found in such trace amounts as to have no long-term effects. Overwhelming Your Child's Immune System How Many Shots They Get
The "too many, too soon" argument is, honestly, bullsh*t. I guess I kind of get it on paper. I mean,
compared with the five shots babies got 50 years ago, 14 shots before age 2 can seem excessive. But all it means is that we're able to protect our kids against more diseases. And even though there are more shots, kids today are exposed to fewer antigens (the stuff in shots that cause the production of antibodies). As for too soon, we need to protect children from diseases their little bodies can't handle as soon as it's safe to do so. Pain
Yes, shots hurt. You know this from experience. Nobody's all, "Can't wait to get me some shots today!" Injections will hurt your child, and it will probably be hard for you to watch. That pain is mild and fleeting, though, and undoubtably a small price to pay for the incredible benefits of vaccination. Furthermore, watching your child cry after a shot is so much better than watching your child unnecessarily suffer from a terrible disease.
Crying (Yours & Your Kid's)
Babies have no other way to express their displeasure than to cry. Worse, you can't explain to them that you're doing it for your own good. Be prepared for tears all around, but try to remember that this isn't a traumatizing life event. If you're ready to provide comfort and praise when it's all over, the crying will cease before you know it.
I'm not saying it won't happen because, you know, it might. I'm saying you shouldn't worry about it. There's nothing you can say to convince people who are
entrenched in their anti-vaccination opinions. Honestly, I think they should be required to look at pictures of kids in iron lungs, but that's just me. Let them talk, and until your child is fully vaccinated, keep their kids the hell away from yours.