Friday, November 7, 2008

Flu shot? Thanks, but no thanks

I've written before about why we delay vaccinations with our kids, but there is one vaccine we avoid completely: the flu shot. Even though it's given away for free at my office and it's available for the asking from our family's doctor, even though cold and flu season is definitely upon us, even though I'm currently feverish and hacking up a lung, I'm not going to be rolling up my sleeve -- or my kids' sleeves -- for this one. Here's why:

Aside from the whole Thimerosal issue (the flu vaccine is one of the few that still uses the mercury-laced preservative), the real reason I’m avoiding the flu vaccine is that it doesn’t work for about 85 percent of people who exhibit flu-like symptoms. ... [More]
Not enough of a reason? Here's another:

Even if I did happen to fall among the less-than-15-percent of people who have a form of the flu that the vaccine can prevent, it takes as long as two weeks for your body to start producing antibodies once you’ve gotten the shot. Which means that you can end up with a sore arm AND a raging case of the flu. Which, coincidentally, is exactly what happened to me the first and only time I got a flu shot, years and years ago. ... [More]
Do you get, or have your kids get, an annual flu shot? Post your two cents over at The 36-Hour Day.

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