Flu Shot? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Anyone else considering this? Assuming I can find one without thirmasol, I read somewhere that if you get one while pregnant it will provide your baby with some protection during flu season. Anyone else hear this? Alternatively, anyone have experience with the flu-mist?

Jane -- married to Ernie since 1993, mommy to Jonah (6/03) and Noah (11/06), m/c 1/09 and 10/09 and finally due with our little girl (8/10)
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#2 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 04:41 PM
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Here's some info from the CDC about the flu shot:


Flu-mist is not approved for pregnant women, but they do recommended that pregnant women get the inactivated injection.

I probably won't be getting the flu shot. I don't think it's particularly effective, although that is based mostly on anecdotal evidence. My father is a physician and got the shot every year when I was growing up. Some years he got the flu, some years he didn't. The shot didn't seem to have much effect. Good luck making your decision - I can definately understand not wanted to get the flu while pregnant or while your little one is young!
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#3 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 04:48 PM
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I would never ever ever get the flu shot no matter what.

Did you know getting a flu shot for 5 year greatly increases your risk of getting Alzheimer’s? I can see the truth of this in my aunt.

I believe the flu shot to be one of the most worthless vaccines there is.
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#4 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 05:41 PM
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My doctor never brought it up with my son's pregnancy, so I did and told her, "I don't plan to get the flu shot."

Now, she's a family practice doctor - sees sick people of all ages all the time. Her response?

"That's fine - I never get it, either."
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#5 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 07:05 PM
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I'm getting it, my kids are getting it.

Boys: 12/94, 1/99, 11/03, 6/11. Girls: 11/06, 10/09, 12/12 2ndtri.gif


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#6 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 07:15 PM
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I would not get it, never have, and I would never give it to my kids. I just don't see the justification in putting us at risk in exchange for not getting sick. Our immune systems are good and since I am nursing I don't have to worry as much about the baby as mom's who formula feed.
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#7 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 09:09 PM
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I never get it and never will. I also wouldn't give it to my kids.

Rachel , wifey to best friend Karl ,
SAHM to Kaelan (11) Chandra (9) Liam (7) Lachlan (5) Killian (4),Riordan (1), Baby Boy EDD 11/14. All born at home!

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#8 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 11:14 PM
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No, absolutely not. If I were to vax for anything it would have to be something I'd consider very deadly and likely to get, the flu doesn't register on that scale.

There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.
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#9 of 11 Old 10-17-2006, 11:30 PM
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I just received an email on this topic that I'm pasting below. I'm not getting it and I don't get for my daughter. Her pediatrician thinks it is pretty much worthless since the vaccine is based upon a "guesstimate" of this year's strain. He only recommends it for high-risk patients (kids with asthma or other chronic illnesses). Prevention, especially frequent handwashing, is key. BTW, the recommended time for handwashing is about the time it takes to sing Happy Birthday. Much longer than most of us take!

Here's the newsletter from "Vedababy"

The Flu Shot

FLU SEASON AGAIN: Last year I wrote to you about the importance of flu prevention and the possible need for flu shots. With flu season upon us, it's time again to face that annual question once again: flu shot or no flu shot?

Each winter, the flu vaccine is manufactured based upon the data collected from strains of flu that arrive in the Southern Hemisphere during its winter, which is our summer. As such, there is no guarantee that the Southern Hemisphere formulation will match the strains active in North America by the time our winter flu season hits. However, extensive amounts of research and development go into the study of flu strains, and the vaccines reflect that up-to-the minute research.

Yet the decision to get a flu shot goes beyond the issue of whether or not the flu shot will "work" from one year to the next: questions remain about whether the flu shot itself is harmful, whether the preservatives used are harmful, and whether the vaccine's impact on our natural immunity is harmful. And many people who have not actually suffered from the flu minimize its impact on those who are more susceptible.

Making the Decision:

The first step is to collect accurate information. First, learn about what goes into the making of the flu shot: for example, the additives. During the flu vaccine manufacturing process, antibiotics such as neomycin, polymyxin B and gentamicin are added to eliminate stray bacteria. Other ingredients can include Triton-X 100, a detergent; polysorbate 80, an emulsifier that is a potential carcinogen; and additives such as formaldehyde to inactivate the virus, as well as gelatin and residual egg proteins used to nourish the cultures. Some flu shots still contain thimerosal, an organic form of mercury used as a preservative. Thimerosal has been hypothetically linked to neurodevelopmental disorders in children such as autism, mental retardation, speech disorders, and personality disorders. Please be reminded that not all flu formulations are alike: ask your doctor about the specific ingredients.

Secondly, assess your personal risk and the risk you pose to others that you care for. This includes your exposure risk, the extent of that exposure, and its impact on your daily life. If you have a child or an elderly family member, assess the risk to their health should you get sick, as well as your overall ability to care for them. If you work outside the home, can you afford to miss 5 days of work? For your children, are they old enough to fight the infection effectively on their own? There are flu shots for children over 6 months of age that are preservative free. Ask your doctor to review the risks of your child contracting the flu this winter.

Third, consider the alternatives:

FluMist is a thimerosal-free, intranasal, alternative for people from 5 to 50 years of age. However, the intranasal delivery system is much less uniform and potentially much less effective, especially in younger children who have a difficult time inhaling in synchrony with the intranasal dose. Furthermore, because it is a live virus, you can get mild transient flu symptoms. And like the injectable form, patients with egg allergies cannot use it since contains egg proteins.

Herbal supplements include lime flower (Tilia) for nasal congestion,) and yarrow (Achillea millefolium) for anti-inflammatory. In addition, elderberry syrup ( Sambucol) helps with fever, muscle pain and respiratory symptoms. It also strengthens cell and mucus membranes to inhibit viral penetration and spread of disease. Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea and E. pallida) has been touted as effective immune enhancers; however, a recent New England Journal of Medicine study found Echinacea was actually ineffective in preventing or treating colds. On the other hand, numerous studies show Oscillococcinum can reduce the severity and duration of the flu.
Other herbal alternatives to help boost your immune system this winter include Western larch (Larix occidentalis), Olive leaf extract (Olea europaea) and Oregano oil (Origanum vulgare). Ask your doctor to review.

Finally, make your decision early:

The flu season is scheduled to peak in February so the ideal time to get the vaccine would be October and November. Begin to reinvigorate your immune strength, and do not forget the staple of infectious disease control: hand washing.
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#10 of 11 Old 10-18-2006, 06:02 AM
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I've never gotten the flu shot and never plan to (nor do I give it to my kids). I've had the flu *once* since adulthood, and honestly, it wasn't that bad an illness for me to justify getting a vaccine every year. If I had chronic health problems or was constantly around someone who did, I might reconsider, but being pregnant - no way. And even if flu goes through my family, breastfed baby is unlikely to get it anyway. You hear stories of that happening all the time - the entire family is sick except the newborn breastfed baby.

(oh, and I do vax... just don't think the flu vax is worth the risk)

Mama to Tornado Boy (6/04), The Brute (11/06), and Mischief (05/09)... expecting
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#11 of 11 Old 10-18-2006, 10:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, you have all convinced me. I was on the fence and I now I have decided not to get it. The article noted above is pretty scary -- especially regarding the additives that are added to the shot. Yikes!! Handwashing sounds like the best defense!! Thanks everyone.

Jane -- married to Ernie since 1993, mommy to Jonah (6/03) and Noah (11/06), m/c 1/09 and 10/09 and finally due with our little girl (8/10)
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