Are unvaccinated kids healthier?

In a recent study on vaccinations, results showed that vaccinated children have 2-5 times more diseases and disorders than unvaccinated children.

Hmmm.

We chose to vaccinate Adam when he was a baby. We were young and didn’t know better. I honestly thought that vaccinating was the only option and that we didn’t have a choice. Obviously, I didn’t do any research and trusted Adam’s pediatrician because he had his best interest at heart, right? Well, 2.5 years and much research later, we decided that we wouldn’t vaccinate Lucas. While we haven’t ruled out all vaccinations all together, Lucas has yet to receive any and I don’t know when or if he will.

One part of the article kind of shocks me, but it probably shouldn’t…

No study of health outcomes of vaccinated people versus unvaccinated has ever been conducted in the U.S. by CDC or any other agency in the 50 years or more of an accelerating schedule of vaccinations (now over 50 doses of 14 vaccines given before kindergarten, 26 doses in the first year).

First, I’m shocked (and frankly, disgusted) by the amount of vaccines given within the first year. Delayed schedules! It’s extremely difficult to pin point a reaction to a vaccine if you’re given 2-4 at a time. Secondly, it’s disappointing that there aren’t more NON-biased, evidence based research and studies done on the vaccine versus anti-vaccine front. Sigh.

I believe that choosing to vaccinate (or not) is definitely an extremely difficult parenting decision (one of many!) and if you’ve done your research and THEN decide, then I support that – even if I don’t agree with it.

I recently had a great friendly debate with some other mamas over vaccinating and one thing that came up was the flu shot. Someone made a comment along the lines of “I’ll do anything to keep my child healthy, so he’ll get the flu shot”. I found that comment interesting because I would say that exact same thing in regards to NOT giving my children the flu shot.

If you are on the fence about vaccinating, I highly recommend The Vaccine Book by Dr. Sears for a great pros/cons debate so you can make an informed decision.

What are your thoughts on this recent study? I’m also curious to know if you will be giving your kid(s) the flu shot?

You can see the full article here. Friendly debates are always welcome! ;)

Comments

  1. I’m with you if you have done your research then I will stand by your side. From a nursing stand point I vaccinated all the boys then I started researching and decided that when I had Dot I would do a delayed schedule and so that’s what we have done.

  2. I’m very odd when it comes to flu shots. We don’t get flu, chickenpox, shingles, or HPV, but we do get all of the others. I think that it’s a personal choice for each family, and no side is wrong AS LONG AS THEY DO THEIR RESEARCH AND MAKE AN EDUCATED DECISION. I know people that have their kids vac because they were vacced, or don’t have vaccines basically because “all the cool kids are doing it that way”, and they both drive me crazy.

  3. My kids will definitely NOT be getting the flu shot and I’m with ya on the thought that I am not giving it to them because I want them to be healthy. I would like to say that I am 33 years old and never had a vaccine. EVER. My kids are the same. There are way too many risks involved in getting vaccinated. The risks of the side effects of the vaccines so highly outweigh the risks of the diseases being vaccinated for.

  4. We have Kynlee vaccinated all except for the flu shot. I also chose not to get it when I was pregnant. At this point, we’ll continue with the vaccinations but will not be getting the flu shot. I like to see debates on topics like this as long as the opinions are informed!

  5. I do believe that the vaccines do not strengthen our immune but destroy it. My family does not vaccinate. We take other measures to build our immune for flu season.

    As for the flu shot – I have a photo of the actual insert. The actual insert says – ‘there has been no studies done to prove that this shot works’. It baffles me why people do not read the inserts – and just blindly inject these things just because the Dr. tells them to.

    Since the 1970’s (back when half as many child vaccines were given), more than twice as many children are suffering with chronic brain and immune system dysfunction.
    In1980, less than 2 million children ages 14 years or younger suffered with asthma (an autoimmune disorder). In 2002 that number had risen to between 6.5 and 9 million. That is 1 in 9 children.

    Thanks. But no thanks.

    • Those are some really scary stats :(

    • I think that the increase in asthma can be attributed to a lot of things. The number of c-section births since the 1970′s is astounding too and that is linked to asthma. You have to think of how air quality is not near as good in certain areas as well. My second is an asthmatic, born c-section and has also been immunized. I did some research on asthma after he was diagnosed at 7 months, and I’m convinced that it is not due to immunizations from what research I have done. I don’t think asthma can be directly tied to anything, there are so many contributing factors.

      • Oh asthma was just one example I was using, but there are many, many more auto immune diseases that have increased drastically since the time period that the number of vaccines was increased.

        As for asthma and other issues, I do believe that our environment and our diet can be a cause and we will never know unless we take 100% caution against chemicals and food that is not organic (and some other environmental issues). I have a hard time with going 100% green. I am trying due to my asthma. I have almost converted all of my household cleaning supplies over to “green” one’s – but a couple of my favorites are hard to get rid of. I do also see a holistic Dr. that eliminates my allergies, which in turn eliminates my asthma. So that helps too.

        Mama B: I came across this and thought of this post… “Vitamin D is Better than the Flu Shot” – it is just informative.
        http://youtu.be/Ef0IGjDnRmQ

  6. Stephanie G says:

    Well, I guess I will be the dissenting voice here, since everything else has been in agreement. I respectfully disagree with the study that was done. I don’t believe it has a lot of credibility in the methods that were used. I am a scientist and mathematician and this study does not hold the standards of a legitimate scientific study. First off, they only let parents of non-vaccinated children take the study, and the study is being performed on a website called VaccineInjury.info, which is a website that, most likely, only anti-vaccine parents would be visiting, which could easily skew the results of the study. Secondly, I adamantly disagree with, an am insulted by, the statement made on the healthfreedoms.org website you linked to, where it states that parents of unvaccinated children are more likely to make other healthier choices such as feeding their children a much better diet. I have done my research on vaccines and fully support vaccinating my children. If others choose not to, then that is their decision, but I believe they need to be respectful of those who do choose to vaccinate and not make assumptions that someone who vaccinates does not care about the health of their children and would not make healther choices when it comes to things like feeding their children, which is completely unrelated to vaccinations.
    Anyhow, that is just my two cents on the other side of the issue. Please hear me when I say I respect that the decision to vaccinate is the parents’. I don’t want to come across as being rude or harsh…just wanted there to be 2 sides to the issue stated here. :-)

    • Hi Stephanie! Totally appreciate you taking the time to comment and I definitely respect your stand point, because it’s a researched, informed one! I know everyone parents differently (and I respect that!). I so wish there were more non biased studies surrounding this topic! There will probably never be one because money talks. Sigh.

    • Stephanie,
      I’m totally with you on the biased study. I’m totally against vaccinations, but when I see a study done by any non vax groups, I get frustrated, because I too, don’t feel it holds any weight. Just as I don’t think any study done by the people backing vax hold any weight either. Unfortunately, I think Mama B is right. I don’t think we will see an unbiased study anytime soon. There are too many opinions on both sides. And… I don’t think you came off as rude or harsh. :)

    • I agree with this too. I also believe it is every parents’ choice and right to make an informed decision and do what is best for their family. This study rubs me the wrong way though, simply because “The data was collected from parents with vaccine-free children via an internet questionnaire by vaccineinjury.info and Andreas Bachmair, a German classical homeopathic practitioner. The independent study is self-funded and is not sponsored by a large “credible” non-profit or government health organization.”

      I am also very curious why everyone has been talking about the AAP’s recommendations about tv for children under 2, but not their guidelines for reducing SIDS and statement that “Evidence suggests that immunization reduces the risk of SIDS by 50 percent.”

      Could both studies be flawed or biased? Yes. Could both be accurate? Yes. All I am saying is that I think this needs to be an ongoing discussion with both sides presented and discussed so everyone can make informed choices. :)

    • Your comment here was very well thought out and I agree 100% with you. As someone who also works in the health care field and has done my fair share of research, I believe that in the end, the pros outweigh the cons.

  7. We chose not to vaccinate after much research. To me it is counter intuitive and makes no sense to give my child something that destroys her immune system in order to make her ‘healthier’. From personal experience, all the unvaccinated children I know are a lot healthier than the vaccinated ones (just generalizing of course, plus they have different diets). We choose to build up the immune system so she can fight whatever comes her way. Of course with most kids’ diets these days (sugar and grains), the immune system virtually has no chance at fighting diseases, so vaccines are like a really crooked crutch for an already stressed immune system. Though I understand why parents still choose to do them, they simply think they’re doing the best for their children – that’s what we all want in the end.

  8. Honestly, I was young and naive when I had my first baby, so when the doctors told me to get her vaccinated, I did. Now that I’m older and know better, I still decided to vaccinate my youngest, though we also are on a delayed schedule. The statistics for both vaccinating and not are so at odds with each other, it’s hard to make an informed decision. Who’s to say which information is accurate? The best any of us can do is research to the best of our abilities and hope we make the right choice.

  9. I worked at a preschool until I had the twins so I was always bringing home different illnesses and the possibility of diseases being spread was higher. My oldest was vaccinated on a delayed schedule of my choosing, while my Twins are being vaccinated on a delayed schedule that their doctor’s office now offers. So many parents were choosing to delay that their office has set a schedule that gives fewer vaccinations at one time and more spread out then the normal schedule. They are also the attending physicians where I delivered the twins and they deny all newborn shots in the hospital, they don’t even make it an option for their patients. Their office does not “allow” you to not vaccinate. You can delay the vaccine up to 3 months from their schedule (which is already delayed) before they will ask you to leave the practice. I think it’s a “happy median” between what we both want. The flu shot was offered but we chose not to give them. I am a SAHM and my kids don’t interact with other children very often. If Willow was in preschool I may have considered it, but feel it isn’t necessary right now.

  10. Carrie Phelps says:

    WOW, funny you should post this two days following a family blowout on this topic! My daughter & her husband vaccinated my first grandson (whom has now suffered with various medical issues) but did not my youngest grandson (whom seldom is sick) and will not vaccinate my six day old granddaughter. Because they have made this decision members of my family felt the need to not only voice their opinions but to physically threaten my son in-law. To make a long story short I no longer will communicate with these members of my family. My opinion, it’s YOUR decision … they are YOUR children. I vaccinated both my children & experienced no health issues. I made it my policy at the birth of my first grandchild four years ago to keep my opinions to myself, unless asked, and to allow my daughter to parent her own children.
    Carrie

  11. In answer to your questions:

    1. What are your thoughts on this recent study?: I think it’s BS, like many “studies” this one as they state was done by “data [that] was collected from parents with vaccine-free children via an internet questionnaire by vaccineinjury.info ”

    Vaccinateinjury.info? Sure it was done with their own money but even just the title of the site shows bias. And done by “an internet questionnaire?”

    I hope people doing their research aren’t using “studies” like these as evidance.

    2. I’m also curious to know if you will be giving your kid(s) the flu shot? No. But I got one for myself.

    • PS: I didn’t mean you were wrong for linking this site or anything. I was just answeing your questions. I’m sure you know that seeing what you said earlier it seems you know better and take studies with a grain of salt :)

  12. Thank you for posting this :) I admire you as a mother.

    I chose not to vaccinate and my son has never had a cold that lasted more than 3 days. No ear infections and no virus. I’m convinced its because of not vaccinating.

    Those who do vaccinate, its not that its wrong, it just wasn’t the choice we made for our family.

    • Aw, thank you so much Katydid! You made my day :)

      I totally agree with you, different things work for different families and just because one thing works for my family doesn’t mean it’s the “right” or only choice!

  13. Crafty Mama says:

    We don’t vaccinate. We’ve thought about doing the whooping cough vaccine, since pertussis is coming back. However, we’ve also heard that a new strand of whooping cough may be developing, probably because of the vaccination. I read an article recently talking about how research is showing that the whooping cough vaccine is wearing off faster than they expected it to, and booster shots are now recommended at about 7 years of age — that’s just one year after the child completes their first 5 scheduled whooping cough vaccines!

    I highly recommend “Make an Informed Vaccine Decision” by Dr. Mayer Eisenstein. Great book with lots of important vaccination information.

  14. Personally, I think the benefits outweigh the risks for us. When it comes to flu shots, we get them because my father is a transplant recipient and will be on immunosuppressants the rest of his life because of it and we don’t want to infect him with anything preventable, since he catches any little thing very easily. As far as people talking about the general health of their kids, I’ve done standard vaccinations (waited to do hep ones, as they’re COMPLETELY unnecessary right away) and my first (daughter) didn’t get sick until just before she turned 2. Has never had more than a cold for a few days. My son, on the other hand (second born), has had 3 ear infections and he’s just 18 months old. Whether a person gets sick or not has to do with a lot of factors and I don’t think it can be attributed solely to vaccinations.

  15. I have 4 children, my youngest being almost 5 months. They’ve all had their vaccines, and I’m a Nurse and do have some medical background. The big diseases scare me…Pertussis, Measles, Whooping Cough, Rubella…these are diseases that killed young children back in the day. But, it is very true that there are is such an abundance of more medical technology. So, would these kids actually die from these diseases? The chicken pox/varicella one…my oldest 2 have had that, but I’m not so sure that I will get it for my younger 2. Do they HAVE to have it to start Kindergarten? Why do their cards say that “All Vaccines Must Be Up To Date”. See, I took that as they had to have them. None of mine do get the flu vaccine. I did get it with during my pregnancy with Presley, because my midwife told me that there were 2 women up in ICU with influenza…that it was a very bad strain going around…this was in February, I believe. I don’t know, to each their own. Seems like either way, you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t!

  16. I won’t weigh in on the vaccine side, but we don’t do flu shots. I’m just not convinced they do any good.

  17. The kids do get vaccinated, but NO flu shot .

  18. I’ve changed a lot since my son was small. I would have a much harder time having him vaccinated now. Knowing what I know know, NO FLU shots. The side effects can be just as debilitating.. and deadly as the flu. I know quite a few people who become sick all winter long within a couple of weeks of the flu shots, not always the same illness every year, it screws up your immune system. I’m a victim of that myself.

  19. I am giving birth in December, and will not have my son get the flu shot. I think it’s ridiculous to pump babies with a bunch of unnecessary vaccinations, especially during the first days and weeks of their lives. A few great tips I have received from moms are to nurse (which I am going to do) to help build their immune system, and keep them indoors as much as possible for at least 6 weeks to prevent them from catching the flu or any other ailments. I think this is much more natural and effective than giving them a shot. Just my thoughts.

    Thanks for sharing this!

  20. I am definitely one that is pro vaccine. As I said in reply to another comment posted here, I believe that the Pros definitely outweigh the cons. I also strongly believe that every child is different, and different factors in life will affect them differently. My boys have both had their vaccines on a recommended schedule. One has been so healthy, never had any problems other than maybe a common cold and is almost 6. My 3 year old on the other hand has had a lot of health problems, is an asthmatic and when he gets sick, it’s definitely amplified. He was hospitalized last year for a sickness that most kids would be able to fight off. Do I think it’s attributed to immunizations? Most definitely not, but there will always be those who beg to differ. I did read a few books while pregnant the first time about vaccinating, ones that were not biased one way or the other and then I made my own informed decision. Vaccinating your child: Questions for the concerned parents was one that I read that was pretty neutral on the subject and it helped me to decide to vaccinate.
    You also have to think about the types of diseases that have been eradicated over the last century due to vaccinations. Pros and cons to every situation, but as I said before, I believe in vaccinating, and will continue to vaccinated subsequent children that we may have.

  21. I vaccinate my children. I think we have forgotten how many children used to die from diseases that have all but been irradicated today. Measles, mumps, rubella (can cause deafness, blindness, mental retardation in newborns) , polio (can lead to paralysis), diptheria (breathing and heart problems), hib (causes bacterial menengitis) hepatitis, and pertussis. Yes, we probably do have too many vaccines now (flu and chickenpox) but the major ones are a scientific breakthrough. We are very lucky to live in an era with modern medicine whether or not you choose to participate in the benefits. If we aren’t careful, these diseases will resurface because not enough people are being vaccinated.

    http://yourlife.usatoday.com/health/story/2011-10-21/Unvaccinated-behind-largest-US-measles-outbreak-in-years/50852098/1

  22. I know this is an old post, but still very informative and a good read. Thank you for the information, and I hope to be able to make an informed decision about vaccination with an understanding pediatrician.

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