From the time any child is born they are required to receive vaccinations for a variety of different diseases that are said to potentially save that child’s life. Vaccines that are to prevent diseases such as hepatitis B, tetanus, the flu and more. In many cases, the child grows up and lives a healthy life and continues to receive the required vaccinations. But there are scenarios when the vaccine doesn’t protect the child. What parents are now starting to realize from news articles and reports is that vaccines also contain harmful ingredients that can affect their children in negative ways. They are now hesitant whether they should continue to let their children get these required vaccines that are supposed to be saving their lives. There are parents who continue to ignore these reports and believe in vaccinations. Parents should not vaccinate their children because the harmful ingredients can trigger autoimmune diseases and cause fatal side effects.
Vaccines contain some ingredients that raise concerns whether it is safe or not to be injected into the body. One of the ingredients is thimerosal or ethylmercury. According to Robert F. Kennedy Jr’s February 12, 2017 Children’s Health Defense article “Mercury is Not Safe in Any Form: Debunking the Myths About Thimerosal ‘Safety’,” “Thimerosal is a mercury-based preservative used in vaccines and other medicine… thimerosal exposure has been linked to attention disorders, speech delays, language delays, Tourette Syndrome, misery disorder, seizures, epilepsy, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, narcolepsy, heart disorders, Neurological disorders, asthma and allergies”. Thiomersal is used in vaccines and also other medical products as an ingredient to preserve in from decaying, or in this case, stopping bacteria from growing and spreading in vaccines. The danger of this ingredient is that it is linked in some way to many of the diseases listed above. According to Brian Hooker and others’ Biomedical research journal “Methodological Issues and Evidence of Malfeasance in Research Purporting to Show Thimerosal in Vaccines is Safe,” “There are over 160 studies that have focused on thimerosal… 16 of these were conducted to specifically examine the effects of Thimerosal on human infants or children”. These 16 studies examined the reported outcomes of the children which varied from diseases and disorders to death. One of the studies that had shocking results was “The Veestraeten et al. Study”. This study had tested “infants who were exposed to greater than 25 micrograms of mercury in vaccines…” (Hooker 5). From this, they concluded that this led to risks for neurodevelopmental disorders, speech disorders and nonorganic sleep disorders and the results were statistically significant (Hooker 6). This was just one study out of the 160 plus that were conducted to examine the effects. Just this study alone, it is clear that an exposure to thimerosal runs the risk of serious disorders.
Another ingredient used in vaccines is a substance known as gelatin. This ingredient can be an issue because of its ability to cause allergic reactions. According to Kate Johnson’s November 21, 2013 Medscape article “Flu Vaccination Allergy May Be Attributed to Gelatin, Not Egg,” “investigators presenting here at the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI) 2013 Annual Scientific Meeting warned that gelatin allergy can be a problem.” Almost any person can be allergic to something and it can trigger an allergic reaction. Sometimes allergic reactions are very minor: itching and hives are common effects. But in other cases, allergic reactions can be deadly. Johnson also states that “[An allergic reaction]- though rare, can trigger anaphylaxis” (Johnson). Anaphylaxis is a type of reaction where the body becomes hypertensive. When the body becomes hypertensive, one’s blood pressure may rise, and this leaves them at risk for problems such as a heart attack or stroke. This isn’t the case all the time, but there is the possibility that gelatin can cause serious damage when injected into the body.
There is also monosodium glutamate (MSG) included in vaccines. According to Rishma Parpia’s June 16, 2016 The Vaccine Reaction article “Monosodium glutamate Used as a Stabilizer in Vaccines,” “MSG is used as a stabilizer in vaccines. Stabilizers are added to vaccines to help the vaccine remain unchanged when it is exposed to heat, light, acidity or humidity.” This keeps the vaccine under control when conditions change. For example, when it is exposed to different temeratures. Parpia also states in her article that “Almost all processed foods on the grocery store shelves ranging from soups to crackers to meats contain MSG to enhance their flavor” (Parpia). This is important because yes, we eat food that contains MSG. But for those that have a low tolerance for the substance, short term side effects such as “numbness, headaches, fatigue, disorientation and heart palpitations” (Parpia) may occur. There are other studies involving MSG on long term effects that it can cause. There is still ongoing research to determine whether there are more or not. At this very moment, MSG has the capability of causing short-term effects.
Through the years, there has been evidence that shows that vaccines have the potential to trigger autoimmune diseases. According to Stephanie Watson’s October 18, 2017 Healthline article “Autoimmune Diseases: Types, Symptoms, Causes and More,” “An autoimmune disease is a condition in which your immune system mistakenly attacks your body.” Usually after someone has a cold their immune system is fighting back to make the cells healthy again. When the cold is finally gone, they have a healthy immune system and a healthy body again. The questions that vaccinations have been raising are whether or not they are the reason that one’s immune system will back fire on itself and cause a disease. For example, the purpose of the flu shot is to protect one’s body from the flu. For years the flu shot has been successful against defending against the germs and bacteria that can cause the flu. But there are also scenarios where one may receive the flu shot and still wind up with the flu. A hypothesis would be that one’s “immune system mistakes part of your body as foreign. It releases proteins called autoantibodies that attack healthy cells” (Watson), and as a result one has the flu. According to Alessandra Soriano’s August 14, 2014 Science Direct Journal “Predicting Post-Vaccination Autoimmunity: Who Might Be at Risk,” “Adverse effects may occur following vaccinations, ranging from local reactions to systemic side effects, such as fever, flu-like symptoms, and autoimmune conditions.” Like what was talked about early, there are ingredients included in vaccines that can cause different side effects. But when it comes to autoimmune diseases after a vaccine, questions begin to rise. Also stated by Soriano, “On the other hand it is important to realize that the immune system is stimulated by vaccinations (especially when adjuvants are added), and therefore the chance of side effects is increased, in particular for patients with autoimmune diseases, where the immune system is already stimulated” (Soriano 19). When one already has a disease, their immune system is already working to try and fight back so it isn’t performing at its peak. Pre-existing autoimmune diseases include some such as arthritis, lupus, diabetes mellitus, etc. (Soriano 19). The immune system is already fighting other bacteria in the body so when the vaccine enters the body it stimulates the immune system to produce more fighting cells and most of the time that just won’t be enough. Going back to the example of the person who receives the flu shot, sometimes the vaccine just won’t do it. The immune system can take the material that was injected into it a different way and it is very well possible that instead of attacking the cells that are dangerous, it starts attacking perfectly healthy cells. As a result, one will still get the flu even after they receive the vaccine.
Throughout this paper it has been stated that vaccines have the potential to cause side effects. Now these side effects can either be minor. In other cases, they can be very serious and, in some cases, even fatal. According to Eun Hee Chung’s December 18, 2013 Clinical and Experimental Vaccine Research Journal “Vaccine Allergies,” “mild allergic reactions caused by vaccinations have become common in practice due to an increased amount of vaccinations, however, these mild allergic reactions can still lead to serious complications and therefore require attention.” Numbness, redness, and swelling are all common after a vaccine is received. But sometimes it can be much more than that. With newborn babies there’s really no way of telling what they are allergic to. If they are allergic to the ingredient gelatin, then that can cause problems for the child that can end up being fatal. Chung also writes that “The risk of not vaccinating remains a greater risk than that of vaccinating” (Chung 55). That being said, there is a risk both ways. It is really a decision up to the parents.
Ana Cassidy was told early in her life that she wouldn’t be able to have kids. Later in life she married and miraculously had a daughter. From that day on her love for her daughter has been so strong. Ana wants the best for her daughter. She has said, “All I want is to give her a happy and healthy life. She is my only child. I want to give her what’s best for her” (Cassidy). Ana had to make the medical decisions for her daughter right away and she agreed to the vaccines. “At the time there wasn’t much warning in the news. I believed that this was best for her” (Cassidy). As her daughter grew up, reports started coming out warning of the dangers of vaccinations. As a mother who is responsible for her daughter’s well-being, she began to do research and didn’t like what she saw. “There was too much I saw that I didn’t like. I haven’t been getting my yearly flu shot and I haven’t had the flu. It was a simple decision to not even risk getting the vaccination for my daughter” (Cassidy). From then on, her daughter has not received a flu vaccine and she has been healthy. Ana Cassidy made the right decision when it came to her daughter’s health.
Parents are in control when it comes to decisions having to be made for their children. A video CBS News posted onto YouTube explains a women’s story of having three kids and refusing to have them vaccinated. The woman, Dotty Hagmire, had made the decision to not get her children vaccinated because she “didn’t feel a need to” (CBS News). She believes that there’s a greater risk from receiving the vaccine then not getting it. The greater risk, in this case, being all of the harmful ingredients that are in vaccines. When talking about vaccinating her children for the whooping cough she explained that, “If I get them vaccinated there’s still a chance that they will get the whooping cough” (CBS News). Like Ana Cassidy, these mothers both believe that it is their responsibility to make the best decision for their children. They both feel that by getting vaccinations, they are putting their children at a greater risk.
On the other side of the argument, vaccines are said to build up one’s immune system. Vaccinations have been successful for years and year keeping many safe and healthy. Now while it seems sensible to receive a vaccine, that simply isn’t logical when you take into the account the unhealthy children who did receive a vaccine but became sick anyway. Whether or not the vaccine caused it, parents need to realize that there is a much higher risk of developing medical problems when they allow their child to receive the vaccine. According to Javier C. Hernandez’s July 23, 2018 New York Times article, “In China, Vaccine Scandal Infuriates Parents and Tests Government,” “Hundreds and thousands of children may have been injected with faulty vaccines.” While this isn’t America and China has its problem with drugs being distributed, this is still a horrific thought. Parents don’t exactly know what they are allowing their children to be injected with. They just believe that the drug will keep them safe because that’s exactly what doctors are saying.
More information than ever before is coming out about vaccines. Parents are starting to become aware of what really is inside of the substance that they are having injected into their children. Nobody wants to see their children suffering in any way, especially if they can be the ones to prevent it. Vaccines are dangerous and now we have the resources to figure out how dangerous it really can be. We have the news and the internet and just so much more than before. This is all important because parents need to be is educated. They need to know what is the right and wrong decisions that they have to make for their children. When they do start to learn more, the decision will be easy and their children will live long and healthy lives because of it.