worried about splinters and tetanus - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 07-12-2010, 11:31 PM - Thread Starter
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My DD is 27 months and has not yet received any vaxes. She had a fall yesterday in my Mom's backyard onto some rocks, mulch and dirt - and has four splinters in her palm. We couldn't get them out (they are small and she doesn't let us near them) and they have formed red spots around them and she is complaining her hand is sore.

I'm trying not to panic about tetanus, but the fear is making me consider getting the vax. And wondering if I should now be worried about this......

We did try our best to wash them and put antibiotic ointment on her hand, but I'm worried....... do I have reason to? Should I consider the TIG (which I don't know much about)?

I'm also in Canada and apparently now you can't just get the DTAP - it has Hep B, Polio and Hib in it and there are none with just the three..... yikes! Help - any advice would be great.
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#2 of 8 Old 07-12-2010, 11:50 PM
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Get some Calendula ointment and cover them with bandaids; they may work themselves out. You could also try using the numbing agent moms use prior to vax and try removing them (if necessary I'd remove them with out the agent). Have your mom hold her and you remove them (or whomever has the steady hand). My children have refused to let me remove splinters before, but they eventually give in when the splinter bothers them too much.

I wouldn't be worried. I wasn't when my unvaxed dd has had splinters and there have been several.

DTaP wouldn't do any good for a current injury; you would need the TIG.

"It should be a rule in all prophylactic work that no harm should ever be unnecessarily inflicted on a healthy person (Sir Graham Wilson, The Hazards of Immunization, 1967)."
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#3 of 8 Old 07-13-2010, 12:16 AM
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Our kids are outside nearly constantly. Every one of them has had multiple splinters/falls/scrapes. Sometimes the tiniest splinters must just work out on their own. Our oldest is 13, and he rock climbs with friends, and get's some pretty gnarly things embedded occasionally.

I've cleaned with peroxide, and used tea tree oil to deal with some injuries. None of the children have had any issues, and he is the only one who had a DtaP vaccine-when he was really young..no boosters since. So, I would say that for us, it's fine.

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‘To someone whose god is science, vaccination makes sense. But to someone whose god is God, it is appalling’ - Dr. Golden.
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#4 of 8 Old 07-13-2010, 09:28 AM
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My kids get splinters all the time...they usually don't want me pulling the splinters until the areas get sore, etc. They are all fine.

It does help to use a small bit of peroxide on the area to help "bubble" the splinter out. Usually, though, once it gets puss and redness, it's the body's way of working the splinters out. Just keep an eye on it.
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#5 of 8 Old 07-13-2010, 12:42 PM
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I worry about these things too. We have used a product called Smile's Prid homeopathic drawing salve. I think Hyland's might make it too. You place some on a bandaid and cover the splinter. The splinters have usually worked their way out in a couple days. I'm honestly not sure if my child's body worked the splinters out on its own, or if the drawing salve was the reason, but I still use it. I think it is also meant to draw out impurities and I have noticed the redness goes away when I use it. We get it at the health food store and I think I've seen it on amazon. It is in a small orange container. I also have cleaned small splinters with hydrogen peroxide and/or tea tree oil.
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#6 of 8 Old 07-13-2010, 01:08 PM
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Tetanus is so rare and kids get splinters all the time! Tetanus is really a disease for people who have poor circulatory systems (diabetics, elderly, etc.). My dh hasn't had a tetanus booster in almost 20 years and is in the yard all the time, with plenty of splinters. Dd is not vaxed and has had a number of splinters. We're all still here to talk about it!
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#7 of 8 Old 07-13-2010, 08:27 PM
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I would not worry about tetanus. According to Statistics Canada (and another Canadian source that tracks reportable diseases that I can't recall of the top of my head) there has never been a single reported case of a child getting tetanus, ever, even long before the vaccine was introduced.

Even in the 1920's and 1930's, where farming, living and working conditions were "ideal" for tetanus, and when medical resources and wound care were very poor, only 40-50 deaths were reported annually in the entire country, (of an estimated population of more than 10,000,000 at that time) and no cases in children - whom I imagine were running rampant in farms filled with rusty nails and rusty wires etc.. There was a "rise" in tetanus cases in the 1940's, noted as attributable to injuries from WWII and inadequate wound care.

Over the last 47 years, there have been less than 20 cases reported annually in Canada, with less than 10 cases reported annually over the last 27 years.
More than half of the cases reported were in people over age 50. In the year 2000, there were only 3 cases reported in all of Canada. In 2001, 8 cases were reported in Canada; 1 case was aged 30-39; 2 cases were aged 40-59, 5 cases were aged 60+. In 2002, one case was reported in Canada; the person was over age 60. In 2003, one case was reported in Canada; the person was over age 60. In 2004, two cases were reported, one aged 30-39, one aged 60+. None of these cases were ever in children.

And these are not deaths from tetanus, but just reported cases of tetanus. The death rate from tetanus is 20%. Therefore, based on a "worst-case scenario" from data from the last 27 years, statistically, your child has a zero percent chance of dying from tetanus, (IF there were 10 cases of tetanus IN CHILDREN in a given year, out of a current population of 33,043,854; the odds of contracting tetanus are 0.0000003%, and the odds of dying from it are 20% of that = statistically = 0).

There are no traceable reported cases of tetanus in babies or children in Canada, (and no traceable reported cases of a baby or child dying of tetanus in Canada). This goes back nearly 100 years.

If you or your kids ever do present at the hospital with tetanus like symptoms and a laceration/burn/wound, and they suspect tetanus is a possibility, (and even if you've been vaxed for it) they automatically give you the immoglobulin for tetanus at the hospital since the vaccine doesn't guarantee immunity and / or it typically "wears off" after 10 years. So if you will get the immuglobulin anyway, regardless of whether you've been vaxed for it, why would you vax against it particularly when there is a statistically zero chance of your child getting tetanus and since it can only be given to children in combo with all the other vaxes.

My kids are unvaxed and get splinters all the time. I usually let them be, and/or let them have lots of baths as the water eventually swells the wood and it comes out or disintegrates. You can also try putting ice on it to numb the skin, then pulling at it with tweezers (or use a pin to grab the head of it).

But yeah, I wouldn't worry about tetanus.
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#8 of 8 Old 07-19-2010, 05:23 PM
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thank you for that extremely helpful post.

with all of my friends having babies and wondering about vaccinations, I have been researching them again and for some reason have had some specific fear of tetanus (with a 6 yo dd who is outside the majority of her life).

I appreciate this post so much!

earth honouring, tree hugging, yogi mamma to dd - my forest faerie (Feb/04) and ds - our new little bean born peacefully at home (01/02/11)
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