Originally Posted by zinemama
Well, that's the thing: your plan probably wouldn't work. The incubation period for chickenpox is 21 days. By the time my kids got it, three weeks had passed since they were exposed and I have no idea where it happened. With measles it's 8-10 days. So why do you think there's a "good chance" you would know when your kids are exposed?
My plan would not work if my child caught measles in public without my knowledge. Where I live that is highly unlikely. I realise I will have to look for measles and will probably be intentionally exposing my child to measles - knowing exactly when he was exposed and doing the math accordingly with regards to keeping him at home.
ETA: My plan could not work for the days that my child is contagious without my knowledge, if that does indeed happen. As soon as he is sick, he will be at home. Which makes it about a day, maybe two, that he could be contagious without my knowledge. Not ideal. I know that.
|Measles is highly contagious and can be transmitted from four days before the rash becomes visible to four days after the rash appears.
|It takes an average of 10-12 days from exposure to the first symptom, which is usually fever. The measles rash doesn't usually appear until approximately 14 days after exposure, 2-3 days after the fever begins.
I am not saying this is a perfect plan. It is the best I can do given that the MMR is not an option I am considering for my family.
I do feel a responsibility to do the best I can to keep a contagious child out of public. I definitely would not take a child with suspected measles anywhere public, and I definitely would be communicating my suspicion that he has measles should he require medical care. And if I can pinpoint the day of his exposure, I have a very good chance of managing the disease responsibly at home.
I do not think it is accurate to say that families who choose not to vaccinate are irresponsible. Vaccines are not a full proof alternative. It is not a choice between the safest most effective option (vaccinate) and the irresponsible one (don't vaccinate). Vaccines do fail, and families who do not vaccinate can minimise the risks.
I know that there are risks associated with my choice, and not just for my child. I am not trying to run away from that.
However, for me to vaccinate with the MMR, I would have to ignore the fact that the safety of the vaccine has yet to be studied (There is no evidence in the medical literature that this is indeed a safe vaccine, beyond HCP's assurance/opinion that it is. There is also no evidence in the medical literature that it is not safe. There is very little evidence at all of the safety, either way).
I would have to ignore my preference that my daughter has measles as a child, at a time when the disease poses the lowest risk for healthy children, ensuring that when she is a mother herself one day, she passes on the best protection to her infant. My son would also benefit from the disease during his childhood, as he has a better chance for longer immunity, and less chance of contracting the disease as an adult.
In case it is not clear. I do not think there is a perfect solution. I am being the most responsible I can be given the choices I am making.
There are loopholes in the vaccine induced herd immunity to measles too. That is also not a perfect solution. It is not an alternative that guarantees anything.
Some people feel more comfortable taking their risk with the vaccine. Other people feel more comfortable taking their risk with the disease. There is no risk free, perfect solution. Each choice is equally valid IMO.