Immunizations: separating fact from fiction

As a parent, protecting your little one is one of your biggest responsibilities. However, figuring out the best way to do that can be confusing. There are a lot of different opinions on vaccinations for young children – especially on the internet. But when it comes down to it, there’s a huge body of evidence supporting the safe, medically sound use of vaccines to create healthier societies and healthier children. Vaccines are one of the biggest medical advances of the 20th century, and have done such a good job of curbing the danger of many diseases that it’s easy to forget how dangerous the diseases are.

Fact: Vaccines are safe

They say that “the dose makes the poison.” The amount of certain chemicals found in different vaccinations are not even a little close to a dangerous amount. There’s arsenic in apples. Drinking too much water can be fatal. Mercury, for example, also shows up in common substances like seafood, milk, and contact lens solution. Formaldehyde, another substance which is used in tiny amounts in vaccines, is produced in greater amounts by the human body.

Fact: It’s important to vaccinate to help boost herd immunity

When children are vaccinated, they can’t pick up or pass on the diseases they’re vaccinated for, which protects vulnerable members of the community. This includes people with compromised immune systems, like those with cancer, and babies who are too young to get certain vaccines, whose immune systems are still developing.

Fiction: Herd immunity means that I don’t need to vaccinate

Even if everybody else in your area is vaccinated, the success rate isn’t 100%. This means there’s always a chance that an outbreak could start.

Fact: Medically required immunizations are fully covered by Health Net

Vaccines which are considered medically necessary are required to be fully covered as preventive care by Health Net. This includes all of those that your little one will receive at well-child visits.

Fiction: Vaccines cause serious medical issues like autism and SIDS

Vaccines are very safe, and usually only cause very mild side-effects (if any). These can include a fever or a sore arm around the injection site. Science hasn’t yet found the cause for autism or SIDS, but there is zero credible scientific evidence to link either one to vaccines. 

Instead, it’s been determined that the connection between these two conditions and vaccines is more of a coincidence. They both  just happen to be noticed or diagnosed at around the same time as certain parts of the standard vaccination schedule.

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