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Question: How Often Have Your Non-Vax Kids Been Sick?

post #1 of 75
Thread Starter 

I am really curious about this, since I am the only non-vaxing mother that I know. I am genuinely not trying to start any arguments or "prove" anything, but I am trying to back up a debate that has been going on between myself and some friends of mine for months now.


Here's my story: I have 5 friends all with children around the same age as my daughter (1 y.o.). One of my friends has a set of triplet girls, the other 4 women all have singular children. We are all FTMs. When we were all pregnant I brought up my feelings on vaxing and shared that we would not be vaxing our DD. All of my friends were horrified and thought I was nuts.


Fast forward to a year or so later, and out of all 8 combined children, my DD is the only one who has never been sick. For the last year I have been hearing horror stories about ear infections, chest congestion, reflux, fevers, vomiting, asthma, motor delays, even RSV! My DD has never even had a runny nose. She has had a fever exactly twice, and both times she popped teeth within 48 hours of the fever.


My friends still think I'm nuts for not vaxing, even when I tell them about DD's lack of illnesses. One of my friends has even accused me outright of being full of sh*t! ROTFLMAO.gif


So, this has me wondering - is DD's great health just a coincidence? I truly don't think so, I think non-vaxing is a huge part of it. Add to this the fact that I was only able to BF for the first 6 weeks (and had to supplement the entire time too).


Please, tell me about your non-vaxed DC's illnesses, or lack thereof. I would love to hear your stories! lurk.gif

post #2 of 75

Very rarely,  although to be honest I think that it's mostly because we were HSers ( she is an adult now) so she wasn't exposed to as many kids and their illnesses as the typical institutional schooler is.


ETA that I'd say she has been sick maybe 10 times her whole life, and she is an adult.

Edited by Arduinna - 12/30/10 at 10:04am
post #3 of 75

Data points: 2.5 yo dd, completely non-vacc'd, bf for 6 weeks, then bf/supplemented with commercial formula then homemade formula for almost 2 years), one infection (we did use antibiotics after 10 days of homeopathy, etc.). An occasional runny nose (I think it was a cold, but coincided with running out of supplemented D3, probiotics, etc.), family has had weekly chiropractic adjustments since day 1 of dd's life, a few mild fevers which I don't fear/do welcome as it shows the body is fighting off something. 


I don't think she's been sick a lot of all... but I try to keep her vitamins up, etc. Most of my friends with sick kids do vaccinate, but don't supplement with vitamins, chiro adjustments, etc. Most of my friends with kids who have developmental issues, are boys, do vaccinate...


I always try to remember that statistically, boys have more developmental issues than girls, and since I have a dd and not a ds, regardless of what I think or how I think vaccines contribute to developmental issues, I should sometimes just smile and nod supportingly. 


Seriously, I just smile and nod. When a whole conversation starts up about their last well-baby visit/shot reactions, I just smile and nod. I can't contribute, I won't lie just to fit in, but I do appreciate that I don't have to put my kid through that and am comfortable with the reasons why. Same with Sick Baby conversations. Just smile and nod. Sometimes I'll throw into the conversation what I've done that works (homeopathic tablets for teething pain; Vit D3 drops in their breakfast, etc.) but other than that, smile and nod. Eventually other topics come up.


I will suggest this: don't attempt to change their minds. I have a salesperson friend who always uses the saying: Back up your purchase, which I apply to my vaccinating friends: regardless of how much or how little research my friends have done on vaccination, they have chosen to vaccinate and so will back up their purchase. For them to change their minds on the value, or lack thereof, of vaccination, they will have to experience the adverse situation themselves, whatever and whenever it may be, if ever. Smile and nod.


Good luck mama!

post #4 of 75

I have a 2.5 yr old DS. He is unvaxed and is still BF a bit. He has been sick quite a bit in his short life. He started getting sick when he started daycare at 3 months old. He has had numerous colds, several mysterious fevers and one bad respiratory infection that ended in abx and a nebulizer after natural methods were not cutting it.


My son has eczema and allegies and food sensitivities. I believe tha majority if not all of his problems were inherited by me and also from being a c-section baby. I have many of the same allergic tendencies as he does. We are woking on allergy elimination and doing homeopathy and he is improving.

When a child is very allergic, the immune system is always in overdrive and they are more susceptible to infections I think.


I really thought when he was born he would "never be sick" because he was unvaxed. I think that helps and I shudder to think what his health would look like if I HAD vaxed. I truly believe that he would have had a serious reactions and would have some very serious issues had we vaxed. I know know that there is far more about children's health than just their diet and if they were vaxed and breastfed. Genetics and the mothers health while pregnant plays a HUGE part in a child's health.


All in all however, I think he's doing pretty darn well!

post #5 of 75

I don't know if you are interested in someone who does vax story...


My oldest, 15 now, fully vaxed, totally on schedule, almost never sick until kindergarten when she caught chicken pox (the vax for that was very new and not required back then, so she was not vaxed for that it wasn't on the schedule) and then immediately ended up with 5 consecutive throat infections between catching CP in January that year and April of that year.  Once her tonsils came out due to the throat infections, again almost never sick, several semesters of perfect attendance at school.


My middle one, now 2, fully vaxed but delayed due to forgetfullness and other issues.  Sick more often than dd1, had RSV at 2 months old (thankfully mild) at 14 months had an instance of high fever, threw up 15 times between 11pm and 2am, almost went to the ER, did have our regular doc up most of the night. 


My youngest is only 3.5 months old and has only had one vax appt.  Not really been sick yet.



Another thing...DD1 was fully formula fed.  DD2 was EBF until 3 months old, then formula and bf till about 5 or 6 months, then formula only till 1 yr.  DD3 still totally EBF. 


post #6 of 75

I think a lot of things affect how sick kids get...


Dd is 3 and in pre-school. She was bfed until 25 months. She eats only whole and organic foods. We do not give fever reducers. She loves vegetables. She gets enough sleep and exercise. She gets a cold or the flu (or something that mimics this) every 2-3 months, and it lasts 4-5 days. It follows the exact same cycle every time, including when she gets a fever and how her body rids itself of the illness. I keep her home from school when this happens. I don't think anyone I know would keep their kids home for this sort of sickness, but we do. Her body knows exactly what to do to take care of itself.


Ds is 5.5 months old. He is EBF. Dd just got over a full-blown case of the flu, and ds didn't even have a sniffle (and dd would NOT stop sneezing on him or his toys). I know he's young, but he's never been sick, which is abnormal in my circle of friends by this age and time of year.

post #7 of 75

DD is 6 and DS is 4.5. Neither of them gets sick very often -- they generally catch a mild version of something that's going around 2-3 times a year, if that, and miss most of what's going around. However, we've also been homeschooling, so it's much easier to know what's going around in time to pull them out of an activity than if they were enrolled in public school. On the flip side, we're out and about in public far more than the average kid. DD does have pronounced allergies, which argues for an overactive immune system, which may be a factor in her not getting sick very often. I don't know. Both were breastfed for nearly four years. There's more to factor in than just vax history, but I suspect those are the main factors to account for.

post #8 of 75

I have two boys the first one was vaxed the second not at all, the first one fed formula after 6 months the second one breastfed til almost 4 years old. My first son does get sick and so does my second but not as often about a 2:3 ratio. The big difference is my second son the unvaxed one will get over whatever illness much faster then my vaxed son. My vaxed son's illnesses often linger for quite a while. While my unvaxed will be better in a day or 2.


Added: Neither of my boys have had abx and they are 4 and almost 9.

Edited by MyBoysBlue - 12/30/10 at 2:41pm
post #9 of 75

I think Ping Pong's mom had it spot on. 


My kids also have been sick less.  (And the one time DS did have an ear infection the doc was shocked when I did not want antibiotics!  And, he licked it on his own and hasn't had an ear infection since.)  I see that vaxing friends kids have also been sick more. 


But, there's alot going on here.  Like others have pointed out.  Are they in daycare?  Does mom bring them in and demand antibiotics for every sniffle?  Just genetics? 

post #10 of 75

Maybe we need to define what "often" is in our families. I get sick maybe once every couple years. DD has been sick maybe 10 times her whole life and she is over 18. DH on the other ( ugh he smokes) gets sick at least yearly and often times more than once a year. Personally to me, 2-3x a year is a lot.

post #11 of 75

My son was born 11 weeks early during RSV season and was never really EBF since they fortified everything (wish I had known more at the time, but I digress). He did receive Synagis which isn't technically a vaccine but wanted to throw that out there for full disclosure. I was also bullied into giving him the Hib vaccine.


He's had probably 4 or 5 colds and one somewhat nasty case of Rotovirus that lasted about a week. Other than his initial NICU stay and subsequent extra weight checks he has never been to the ped for anything other than well baby visits....which I may or may not do this time around. He is not in day care or preschool yet but his cousin is and I think he's had 3 of the colds since that happened since he's getting more exposure.


I don't really look at it that a healthy kid never gets sick. I look at it more on how their body handles it. If you're exposed to an illness it doesn't mean you have a horrible immune system if you get it IMHO...especially if you recover from it quickly with no long term damage. That's why we have an immune system and it's bound to be tested if we don't live in a bubble. I think our bodies natural antibodies are more effective than any vaccine will ever be.

post #12 of 75

My kid has been sick twice in his 18 months of life.  The first time he was two months old and he had some kind of nasty respiratory deal with a cough.  We actually brought him to the emergency room for that one because I thought he couldn't breathe.  The second time was when he was 16 months old and caught some nasty vomiting/diarrhea bug.  I thought it was probably Rotavirus, but he passed it on to DH and me and so maybe not.  In any case he was back to normal after just 24 hours.


Other than those two things he is a very happy, healthy kid (outside of chronic constipation...that's a whole 'nother issue!).  He's never had an ear infection and very rarely gets the sniffles.  He is unvaxed and still breastfed on demand which may have something to do with this, but I think the fact he is not in daycare is probably more important.

post #13 of 75

5 yo.  partially vaxed until 12 mo. She was 1/2 breastfeed &1/2 formula feed until her second month old, then just EBF until introduction of solids and breastfeeding until now. She had 2 stomach virus,1 cold, 1 flu(mild), and 1 light fever for 3 hours.                                                                                                                                                                                                                 2 1/2 yo non-vaxed, still  nursing on demand had 1 cold, 1 flu and 1 stomach virus and 2 fevers for couples hours at night.

Edited by isabchi - 1/2/11 at 9:04am
post #14 of 75

My son, 35mo, still EBF currently has congestion and occasional cough without a runny nose. Its been days already, longest ever.


Earlier this year he had a fever on and off for 2 days, it didn't stop him from playing though. Seperately he also had a runny nose. 3x sick for this year, that is. (also eaten the most junk food this year too!)


Last year he had a fever also, but it only lasted ? 1 day. (1x sick last year)


In his first year, I think he also had congestion and a wheezie sounding breathing, but it was gone by the time I took him the next day to see the doctor. Hearing a child wheeze had me freaked out though, but I felt like a dud after I brought him to the doctor. No ear infections, no antibiotics ever though. (1x sick first year)


He has only had one shot... mistakenly given to him at birth...


My sister thinks its amazing that he hasn't had to go to the emergency room or take antibiotics. I do give him vitamins, but I am not great with his diet. More fruit than veges, veges have to be hidden in his food... He is gluten sensitive like myself...


He did however play on and off for days in a crib with a child that I did not know had Scabies, which is extremely infectious, but he did not get it at all. Big relief.

post #15 of 75

DS is 23mos & had (regrettably) 1 dose of daptacel at 4mos & no other vaxes. He's still about 50-70% breastfed.


He has never been "seriously sick" -- no ear infections, nothing requiring a doctor's/ER visit, etc.


He occasionally has a runny/stuffy nose. He has vomitted tons but that has always seemed related to my oversupply issues and gagging on mucous rather than illness (beyond mucous). He is exposed to a lot -- we're out and around tons of kids, mostly strangers, most of the week, but at most he might get a slight fever, like he's fighting off something. There have been maybe 2 times where he was fever-sleep-all-day sick.


I don't know if it's due to not vaxing, we're not a good 'control' because we are overall very different than most vaxing families I know -- we're vegan, we don't medicate (except very occasional homeopathics), we don't use chemical-based household products, etc. -- any combination of those things could contribute to his relatively good health.

post #16 of 75

DD is 4yo, had HepB at birth and that's it. Wouldn't have done that if it hadn't been for the hospital pressuring me and threatening CPS. She's never been in daycare or in school and only has occasional contact with other kids at library storytime and Girl Scout events.


She gets sick maybe 2-3 times a year, ends up actually going to the Pedi maybe once a year for being sick, normally for ear infections. She has been on antibiotics a few times for them, as we proactively treat ear infections due to my history with them {multiple ear infections as a child leading to mild hearing loss and missing most of phonics because I couldn't hear the sounds}. Her immune system is GREAT when she's sick - we all had H1Ni last year and she was over it in 48 hours and never really got sick. She had a fever of 102.8 for about 4 hours at the worst of it, which we treated by wiping her down with a cool rag and one alcohol rubdown. I was sick for 3 weeks and it got really bad.


She does have severe food allergies and excema, both controlled with diet.

post #17 of 75

My infant has not been sick, but she's only five months old and ebf. My 3 yr old was ill when he was five months old, for two days with a slight runny nose, then he wasn't ill again until after his first birthday. The other three were ill for the first time between their first and second birthdays and since then, the four oldest have averaged being ill twice per year. Their illnesses have been very mild and resolve within three days at worst. They have extreme immune systems, so their fevers run high, if they vomit, it all comes out in one or two episodes that are total clean-outs, and then they recover quickly. They have never continued to vomit after being given fermented broccoli brine to drink following vomiting.


The two oldest have had mumps, measles and all but the infant have had pertussis. None were ill longer than 3 days, though the pertussis had them coughing three or four times every evening for a few weeks, but they were absolutely normal in energy and otherwise the rest of the time. I mean that they actually only coughed three or four times each night.


I used to try to stop illnesses with silver water, tea tree oil,  and vitamin C, which was effective, but when we moved up here, I read about strengthening the body through illness, and have since made that our goal when ill. So, I reserve silver water for cleaning wounds, and treat illness with drink and/or food (depending what it is), cod liver oil, and rest. I also assist fevers by making sure the child is well-covered/insulated with blankets, but not to discomfort. My dc prefer want to be hot when their bodies are hot; they never ask to be cooled down- ever. This assistance to the immune system, rather than attack of the illness, has been very effective. We also quit grain and dairy and have been detoxing from that, which has been interesting.


We live on a farm, don't spend much time with other children anymore, but when we did, even when a sick child drooled into my child's mouth (yuck! It was unintentional), he didn't have any symptoms, nor did any of his brothers later on. We were confident that our children would be fine when around other people's sick children, because they were. One friend's home used to cause us all to be sick for days afterward, though. It happens (and this may only be correlation), that they use a LOT of cleaners and even bleach their toys. We use water around the house and Dr. Bronner's for dishes. I figure that the human body evolved and adapted alongside all the little buggly things that people now try to kill because we discovered their existence, so if we don' disturb the natural balance, we should get on just fine together. So far, so good. Our eldest is 7 1/2 yrs old and none of our children have had any serious infections. 


Our six yr old had a wart that was concerning and perplexing me, but we quit grain, and two days later, it had almost completely resolved on its own.


On the issue of immune systems, it is true that a weak immune system can seem strong because a person never seems to show any direct symptoms of illness, but sometimes a person can be riddled with illness and have such a weak immune system that it doesn't function. I was thrilled when after years of being unwell, but never sick, I coughed out phlegm. I felt like the bottom of my lungs were heavy with fluid for years, but I never coughed or had any immune response at all, but I was constantly very tired. I know most people wouldn't rejoice in coughing up phlegm, but for me, it was the first sign that my immune system and body were healing!


I have a friend who swears her daughter never gets sick, but this child is always, ALWAYS unwell: she has pale, pale skin with dull hair and is generally tired, not alert or curious, slurs her words at 5 years of age, etc... Her brother has never not had a runny nose, since he was an infant, and he is now 3 yrs old. The dd was vaxed initially, but isn't anymore, and the ds was not vaxed. They pay little attention to the health of their food, though, so they aren't healthy. Pudding cups because children need carbs to feed their brains, is as far as they understand nutrition, or care to learn, so their dc are always unwell, but never sick.


ETA: None of my dc have had ear infections. I had them along with strep throat at least twice/year for years when I was a child. I was also given lots of abx.

Edited by PreggieUBA2C - 12/30/10 at 6:34pm
post #18 of 75

DS isn't vaxed at all. He will be 4 in a month. Until he started preschool in Aug, he only had a couple of very minor colds, got over them quick, barely made a dent in his life. Then we started preschool and he and I have been sick about 10 times, ranging from a week long cold from heck to one day minor feel like crapola days.


I used to think his immune system was amazing. I used to think not vaxing had an affect. Now, I honestly dont know what to make of it all. But we are both tired of being sick!!

post #19 of 75

DD is 21 months, completely unvaxed, no daycare, still breastfed, and she has pretty much a constant cold during the winter, and has had a flu-like illness a couple times.  She is around other kids pretty regularly though.


DS was fully vaxed up until 6 months, then no vaxes after that.  No daycare, breastfed.  The first time he was ever sick (with a cold) he was 17 months old.  But we didn't take him out that much during the winter.



ETA: Neither of my kids has ever had an ear infection, but I attribute that to breastfeeding.

post #20 of 75

DD1 only received a couple of vaxs at 2m, other other two children have had none. We are ill, a lot, like multiple times a month. They were all bf for years, no daycare, late to go into school, but we are around other children very often. DD1 will be 8 next week and I feel that her immune system is finally functioning, she has only gotten ill a couple times this year but the other 2 still make up for it.  RSV twice, influenza twice, H1N1, pertussis, rotavirus for each child, CP for the older two, many, many colds and stomach viruses, and DD2 gets pneumonia and croup very often though she is now on asthma meds and doing better. Some children just get ill more often despite doing everything "right". shrug.gif What I do believe is that they would be even more sickly if we did not BF, did vaxs, etc... while they might be ill often, it isn't severe in DD1 and DS, it is in DD2 due to her lung issues resulting from pertussis as a newborn. 

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