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   Immunisation – Safety?
I have read stories of babies that have been irreparably damaged by inoculations. How safe is it?

When you consider that it is not that long ago that the major cause of infant deaths was childhood diseases, you will realize just how much immunization has improved the health of children worldwide. In addition, the children that survived were often disabled by diseases such as polio and measles. Smallpox, formerly a major killer of children, has been completely wiped out worldwide. This is an incredible achievement and one that we perhaps don’t value as much as we should. A child in the UK is more likely to die in a car accident than due to a childhood disease.

However, stories abound about children who have been irreparably damaged in some way by vaccinations. The fact is that these problems are incredibly rare. Research has not been able to make any link between vaccinations and diseases such as asthma, diabetes and autism. In fact the vaccinations which your baby will have are purer and more advanced than the ones you were probably given as a child, making the likelihood of side effects even smaller. There is a very tiny risk that your baby will get ill from immunization. But it is considerably less than the risk that childhood illnesses pose.

Problems do arise, however, when parents decide that they are not going to vaccinate their child. The reasoning is that if every other child is immunized then there is no risk of their own child catching the disease in question, since no-one will contract it. The logic just doesn’t work. Firstly, as soon as more than one person follows this path, the risk of disease exists. The fact is that not all disease has been eradicated the way that smallpox has. So there is a chance of your child catching a childhood disease. Even inoculated children do sometimes get ill. But the severity of the disease in inoculated children is far, far reduced, thus also reducing the risk of side effects and permanent damage. In addition, in diseases such as whooping cough, the adult population has reduced immunity because of the length of time since they were immunized, and so the disease does exist in this population. Thus an un-immunized child would risk getting this disease, which is far more severe in children than adults.

See also:

Immunisation - Age of baby

Immunisation - Controversy

Immunisation - Chicken Pox

Immunisation - Diphtheria

Immunisation - German Measles

Immunisation - Hepatitis A

Immunisation - Hepatitis B

Immunisation - Hib Disease

Immunisation - How does it work

Immunisation - Measles

Immunisation - Mumps

Immunisation - Pertussis

Immunisation - Polio

Immunisation - Reducing impact on baby

Immunisation - Rubella

Immunisation - Schedule

Immunisation - Tetanus

Immunisation - Tuberculosis

Immunisation - Varicella

Immunisation - Whooping cough

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