Tetanus lives in the soil. It is everywhere. It is also an obligate anaerobe, meaning it needs an environment free of oxygen to reproduce. This is why puncture wounds are more of a concern than laceration. There is no cure for tetanus once you contract it; all they can do is manage symptoms. The bacteria produce a toxin which cause the symptoms. Until your body clears the toxin, you are going to be very sick.
It's a really terrible disease. There are records during the civil war of soldiers who contracted tetanus having their backs broken by the tetany (muscle contractions) caused by the tetanus toxin. Anyhow, even today, it can interfere with your ability to breathe.
The tetanus toxoid vaccine introduces small amounts of broken down pieces of toxin so that the body can develop antibodies which will clean it up. It takes time for the body to develop these antibodies and in order for them to be most effective, you want to develop them before the bacterial and toxin load gets too high. So getting the shot gives your body a head start.
I would get the shot for your child. It is much better than getting tetanus.
DD1 6/2009 DD2 5/1/2013-5/5/2013 (HIE) DS 3/2014
Last edited by cyclamen; 10-04-2014 at 03:59 AM.