Vaccines aren’t for everyone. In recent years, many parents have decided to create their own vaccine schedule for their children and some don’t vaccinate at all. Vaccine cons aren’t entirely made up. There’s no such thing as a vaccine that is 100% effective or safe and all vaccines pose a side effect risk of some sort. In fact, since the first Vaccine Injury Compensation claims were made in 1989, the U.S. Court system has compensated 2,921 vaccine injury or death claims. Before you make a decision either way – to vaccinate or not vaccinate your child, you do need to research the facts about vaccine safety and risks. You should also research the diseases vaccines prevent, and decide for yourself if the diseases are less scary or more scary than vaccines. To get started read: Weighing the Safety of Baby Vaccines. Then keep reading this post to see some plausible reasons as to why you might want to avoid vaccines.
Why Not Get Vaccinated?
There are many different medically sound reasons as to why you might not want to vaccinate your child. It’s best to discuss vaccines with your child’s pediatrician because reasons not to get vaccinated vary wildly.
- You want to avoid all side effects related to vaccines: The CDC notes that often mild problems with vaccines occur. For example, for those who get vaccinated with the DTaP vaccine, 1 in 4 experience fever, redness or swelling and soreness, 1 in 3 children will be more fussy than normal, 1 in 10 will experience poor appetite and 1 in 50 kids experience vomiting. As for more serious problems related to DTaP, 1 in 14,000 children experience seizure and 1 in 16,000 experience a high fever. Less than 1 out of a million parents report long-term seizures, coma, or lowered consciousness or permanent brain damage for their child who has been vaccinated with DTaP. Other vaccines have their own side effects, which are generally as infrequently reported as the ones above, but side effects are reported for all vaccines.
- You have a known allergic reaction: If your child has experienced a major side effect before, due to a vaccine, or if your child is deathly allergic to a component of the vaccine, the CDC advises that you talk to your doctor before considering the vaccine or don’t get the vaccine at all.
- You’re pregnant or breastfeeding: Many vaccines are not safe during pregnancy and some aren’t if you’re breastfeeding. Before getting a vaccine while pregnant or nursing, carefully weigh the pros and cons of doing so.
- You’re sick – even only mildly sick: If your child is already ill with a cold or flu or other illness, a vaccine might make the illness worse. In some cases, people with certain illnesses such as asthma or immune diseases shouldn’t be vaccinated either.
- You’re the wrong age: Some vaccines aren’t meant for children under certain ages. Some vaccines may also be inappropriate if you’re elderly.