Protect the mom, protect the baby!
Vaccines are a VERY controversial topics. Proponents of vaccines point to the many diseases that are no longer a common threat, while critics of vaccines cite studies that indicate that these vaccines can be linked to health problems. It’s an incredibly complex argument, one that would take a LONG time to fully understand.
But one new study in the journal Pediatrics points to one very important truth: getting vaccinated while pregnant can help to protect your little one. For mothers who want to ensure the health of their children, this is a discovery that could put all the other opinions on vaccines to rest.
The study, conducted at the University of Utah, examined data from as far back as 2005, studying all the women who gave birth at Intermountain facilities. They looked at the infants and their tendency to develop not only influenza, but also influenza-like illnesses. Nearly 250,000 women and babies were studied to obtain the data.
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Of those 250,000 women and their babies, only 2.2% were immunized against influenza at the beginning of the study. After the H1N1 scare, that number rose to 21%. That means roughly 10% of the women involved in the study were immunized.
However, it was discovered that the immunized women had a much lower risk of their child developing not just influenza, but influenza-like illness. Instances of lab-confirmed influenza decreased by 70%, and cases of influenza-like illnesses decreased by 64%. The immunized mothers had an 81% lower chance that their newborn would be hospitalized for influenza than the women who did not get immunized during their pregnancy.
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That’s some pretty serious numbers, isn’t it? An 81% LOWER chance of hospitalization during those crucial first six months of the child’s life! 60 to 70% LOWER chance of developing flus and flu-like illnesses, all thanks to the inoculations. If you were undecided about vaccinations, this study should prove that they are a good idea for you.
Now, make no mistake: this study only examined the effects of flu vaccinations given to the MOTHERS. The babies weren’t inoculated, and the mothers were only given vaccinations against the flu. This covers just one aspect of the complex, multi-layered argument for and against vaccinations.
However, if you want to protect your child against illness in the first few months of their life, it may be a good idea to get yourself vaccinated against the flu. As this study proved, it’s a great way to reduce your child’s risk of coming down with the flu or flu-like diseases.
As for the rest of the vaccines for your child, that is a decision you will need to make–and only after a great deal of time spent researching both the benefits and risks of the vaccination. It is a highly complex topic, one with many pros and cons on both sides of the fence. You can’t make an informed decision until you have as many facts as possible.
Time Magazine has a long list of articles covering the vaccination debate from both sides. You can find a good deal of information online, though you need to be careful to search for information from both pro- and anti-vaccination sources. If you get a one-sided argument, you may end up making the wrong choice not just for your health, but for your child’s. It’s vital that you understand both sides of the coin, so that you can do what you believe is best for your child. You want to give your child a healthy, happy future, so it’s up to you to learn as much as you can now!