Monday, October 26, 2009

to get it or not to get it (the H1N1 vaccine)

I know this is yet another VERY controversial topic...but I'm very curious what you think about this.

As you all know, the H1N1 virus is something that a lot of people are talking about - and it is apparently very serious. I've heard on the Dr. Oz show and The Doctors that it's expected to get worse this winter, and that it's very important for especially pregnant women and children aged 6mo to 19 years to get the vaccine.

Before watching The Doctors this morning, I was convinced that I wasn't going to get the vaccine - as scary as that is - because I felt that it was too new of a vaccine and I couldn't trust that it has been researched and tested well enough, especially for long-term side-effects.

According to what was said on the show this morning, there are many people who are leery of getting the vaccine, for the same reasons I am. They went on to point out that the vaccine is not really a NEW vaccine - it's basically the same as the regular flu vaccine, just with a different strain of the flu in it. And of course - the line "the benefits outweigh the risk".

Now, being pregnant, I know it's not just about me anymore - and me getting the H1N1 flu could be very dangerous for the baby and me. The show also said this morning that the swine flu is very dangerous for children.

So here I am, once again, torn about what to do.

Let me know what you're planning on doing...I'm curious to hear. But please, be nice :)


ps. for those of you who remember me writing a similar post about getting Jaxon immunized - we have decided to go ahead and start getting Jaxon immunized - one at a time. We're not giving him ALL the vaccines...we're sticking with the tried and true ones that we got as kids. So far he's had his first does of the 5-in-1.

12 comments:

  1. Funny, this has been an on-going discussion in our house as well. Jamie has been keeping his eye on things pretty closely and has pointed out that the vaccine that is being used in Canada uses a chemical that is not allowed to be used in the US. This particular chemical jumpstarts a person's immune system so that there doesn't need to be as much of the dead/latent virus. This chemical tends to be used in countries where there is socialized health care and the governments are wanting to stretch out the vaccines so it costs less. I'll let you draw your own conclusions on that one. Just know that this particular chemical is not allowed to be used in the States because of problems associated with it.

    I don't envy your position as a pregnant woman trying to decide whether or not to get the vaccine. I like to do whatever I can to keep me and family healthy but I am starting to realize that there are risks associated with everything/anything I do. Personally, I will be getting lots of sleep, taking my vitamins, washing my hands (but not with antibacterial soap), getting fresh air often and staying away from people with the flu, as best I can.

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  2. It is a really tough decision, especially as a parent! At this point we are not planning on getting the h1n1 vaccine. I also watch The Dr's (which I love) but it is also good to realize that it is an American show so there can be differences (as mentioned above) in testing and even the actual vaccine between USA & Canada. I also don't like the fact that the vaccine has not actually been approved by the Canadian Gov't. A nurse from my hometown (that my parents know) also mentioned that more people die from the regular influenza than the numbers so far from H1N1. I have also heard that the reason why it seems to be affecting young people more than older people (which is strange since most elderly are in the 'at risk' group) is because there was an outbreak of H1N1 in the 1950's (or some time around there) and the people living through that seem to have somewhat of an immunity to it now. At this point we are trying to stay healthy, take our vitamins (especially the kids), eat well, wash hands, keep a close eye on any symptoms (and educate myself on H1N1 symptoms) etc. I know it is not fool-proof, but I also want to trust that God will take care of my family, whether or not we become infected. I also realize that my family is 2yrs + and I am not pregnant. I have a cousin whose son (about 7yrs) contracted what they think is H1N1 and they have been quarentined. It is not fun being sick, but they are not dying (I personally think that the media is sensationalizing a bit - not to say that H1N1 is not dangerous). I look forward to hearing other people's positions as well!

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  3. First off, hello! Yes, I do read your blog. :)

    Although I obviously cannot speak from the position of someone who is pregnant, I choose not to recieve the vaccine for H1N1 or the regular flu shot. Personally, I have a very weak immune system, and the one time I did get the flu shot, I was terribly sick for a month as a result.

    Your immune sytem is really something you have to look at: do you get sick often? Do you have a sensitivity to drugs/injections?

    In the long run, usually the benefits of these things don't actually outweigh the risks, they balance with them. Not to scare you, but like you said, considering the fact that this is a new vaccine, undiscovered side effects at this point could be lurking that could cause greater damage to you or your baby than this so called "killer flu". Yes people have died from it, but more have lived and survived and not even had too bad of a time with it. Heck, even a cold at the right frequency is dangerous to a pregnant woman.

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  4. Here's where I stand at this moment :)

    First of all, a few things I've heard. There is a vaccine available to pregnant women and children that does not contain the adjuvent (possible dangerous ingredients). The only problem with that is that it has 10 times the amount of mercury in it as the regular H1N1 vaccine. I have heard that the amount in the regular vaccine is equivalent to the mercury in a can of tuna. So 10 cans of tuna worth of mercury in the non-adjuvented vaccine.

    This flu is attacking people with a strong immune systerm for some reason. And that in turn makes your immune system over-react, your lungs to fill up with fluid, which leads to death.

    There are ways to keep yourself healthy, including taking 2000IU vitamin D3 (pregnant women especially need the vit D3), and good quality probiotics.

    I read an excellent article on this last night. I'll post the link here for you at the end of this comment :) Anyway, I think we will be avoiding the vaccine, staying home more, and taking our vitamins. Not to mention, washing hands and sanitizing shopping carts, etc.

    This is such a tough decision though!

    http://proudtobeafitmom.blogspot.com

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  5. Hi!! Congrats on the pregnancy!! Hope you are feeling well :)

    I'm also pregnant, just hit the 13 weeks mark. Morning sickness, go away!! My doctor has highly recommended that I get the vaccine, and he has already given me a prescription for Tamiflu in case I show any symptoms of H1N1.

    However, I am not going to be vaccinated for this, and my children won't be either. The media is showing whatever sides of the story they want, but the bottom line is, I am very skeptical of it. And the old saying is, "when in doubt, don't." Until they prove to us that it is 100% safe, I will not put myself, my unborn baby or my toddlers at risk.

    So there's my 2 cents worth. It's a tough decision. Good luck, and do whatever you feel is best for your family, no matter what any of us say :)

    ~Erin
    www.tokensister.blogspot.com

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  6. I agree with Stacey...we will not be getting the vaccine either. I actually have reasearched this a TON on the internet and I believe very strongly that it is blown WAY out of proportion. It is a normal flu...other than it may attack your lungs a bit more than a normal flu. But other than that...in my opinion - normal flu. It is NOT dangerous to your baby unless you become dehydrated, or very very sick yourself. And there are many ways to prevent that. There is a SUPER SUPER SUPER great product called Sambucol (or some places it's called Sabumcus) which is extract from a berry and it is amazing when it comes to the flu. It is safe for pregnant, nursing ladies, kids, babies...everyone. It has NO known side effects and I have used it both when pregnant and nursing before. It fights the flu SO well. Honestly! I hardly ever have to puke anymore when I get the flu because it is that good. I get it at my local health food store. Anyways, that's my 2 cents. I would never ever get a flu vaccine...I believe that the mercury in them is very dangerous and the H1N1 vaccine (even if they're saying it's not "new"), it still hasn't been fully tested. In fact...if you look up the the swine flu scare that happened earlier (I forget the year now)...the flu outbreak never happened and the flu vaccine that they came up with to counter the swine flu did more damage to people than the actual flu itself. Anyways...it's up to you, but I'd vote a big no! :)

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  7. You may not know me, I am from Nipawin, and am expecting twins. We also have 3 other children. None of us will be getting the vaccine. First of all it is a new vaccine so who knows if it is safe or not. As for being pregnant, I do not want to inject my body with unknown chemicals that could potentially harm the babies. Also, there are high doses of mercury in the vaccine which is dangerous to a pregnant Mom at any time. People need to be well informed before making the decision.The media has put fear into everyone(that is their job I guess??)

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  8. OK, so I'm back with some updated info! For the record, there is actually a very small amount of mercury in the vaccine. The amount in the non-adjuvented vaccine is equivalent to less than a can of tuna, and the adjuvented one is 1/10th of that.
    Also, this vaccine has been used with great success in a bunch of other countries (Germany is one I can remember of hand) and there have been no serious side effects, and even fewer mild side effects than the regular flu vaccine.
    For those that are only researching on the internet, please don't stick to that alone! While the choice is still there whether or not I will get the vaccine, I got some much more reliable information today, and much of what you read online is BS. For real.

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  9. I have just done a post on my other blog at www.thisisthedayletusrejoice.blogspot.com

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  10. weighing in from the US... the flu and H1N1 are in short supply in my area and many of my mom friends are waiting in long lines to get the shots for their kids. I am a newly not-pregnant mom, now a breast feeding mom of 3 weeks and I will not be getting the flu shots for myself or my kids. I've never got the flu shot before and can't stand all the hype about this. I have a good friend who is an RN and she feels the entire "epidemic" was created by the media. She says that yes, you can die from H1N1, but you can die from the regular flu too. Watch the symptoms and take care of your family.

    I hope you have a happy, healthy, and speedy pregnancy.

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  11. Yes, but what about those of us who have children with asthma who are already prone to lung infections that cause great difficulty in breathing, even with a mere common cold? Something like H1N1 might be too much for their little bodies. How can I put them at that risk if there is an option available that might save their life?
    However, I am still very undecided as to whether or not our kids will get this vaccine, but just another angle to look at.

    Laura, didn't Jaxon end up on ventilin in the hospital once already? That might be an indication too that his lungs are also prone to infection, just like my children. Just a thought. I just keep praying that God will lead us to make the right decision!

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  12. Brittney11:32 AM

    I did some research about what is in the vaccine
    the ingredients include:
    Ether - Also called diethyl ether, diethyl oxide, ethyl ether, ethyl oxide, sulfuric ether. a colorless, highly volatile, flammable liquid, C4H10O, having an aromatic odor and sweet, burning taste, derived from ethyl alcohol by the action of sulfuric acid: (dictionary.com)
    Detergent - well we all know what this is, laundry soap and other cleaning stuff
    egg embryo - mmm
    the virus - nuff said
    Formaldeheide - were mummifying ourselves from the inside out... greaaaattttt
    Murcury - a heavy, silver-white, highly toxic metallic element, the only one that is liquid at room temperature (dictionary.com)

    Yeah I dont want this in my body... do you? What about in your kids? mercury stays for life!

    I dont plan to get the vaccine, hope this helps your decision

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