Common vaccination myths
There are all sorts of misconceptions and myths about vaccinations. It’s our job to dispel them.
There have been plenty of falsified research papers in the medical community which, in combination with inaccurate and often hysterical reporting in the media, have led to people deciding against life saving vaccinations. Exposure to alternative medicine online might also play a part.
Whatever the reason, it’s a very dangerous trend. If you’re concerned that vaccinations aren’t effective, can expose your child to harmful toxins or cause neurological disorders, speak to someone who genuinely knows what they’re talking about. Our travel health staff are your perfect expert resource, people you can trust to have your best interests at heart.
In the meantime read this. Here’s the real truth about vaccination.
1. Vaccines do NOT cause Autism
Reports revealing that the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is linked to autism in young children are completely wrong. In fact the surgeon and researcher responsible for the myth, Andrew Wakefield, has been completely and totally discredited as well as struck off the medical register.
All the same, at the time the myth got widespread media attention after the respected medical journal, The Lancet, published his research in 1998. The journal has since retracted the flawed research, but the damage was done – the myth had already spread.
Wakefield thought that ‘evidence’ linking the MMR vaccine to autism could not be ruled out, and that administering single vaccines for each disease would be safer. But a reporter at The Sunday Times later revealed Wakefield didn’t disclose a conflict of interest he had with vaccine manufacturers, who wanted to patent a single measles vaccine.
Fresh scientific research in Japan, plus a comprehensive review by the Institution of Medicine, has now completely dispelled any link between autism and the MMR vaccine.
2. Vaccines are NOT full of harmful toxins
There are countless websites, blogs and magazine articles making all kinds of dangerous accusations about the effects of the ingredients in vaccines.
Anti-vaccine campaigners condemn scary-sounding preservatives and additives, but they take their effects and dosages completely out of context. In fact the following ingredients are not harmful in the amounts used in vaccinations.
- Aluminium phosphate
- Antibiotics like neomycin
None of these ingredients are toxic in the trace amounts used in a jab, nor are they dangerous in our everyday diets. Take our daily intake of aluminium. In an ordinary diet we take in more aluminium than we get from any kind of vaccination. And there’s more…
- One pear contains 600 times more formaldehyde than any vaccine
- Some antibiotics do have a high incidence of allergic reactions but neomycin is NOT one of them
- Thimerosal is a preservative containing mercury, which has also been wrongly linked with autism. The link has been totally and completely disproved
3. Vaccines ARE necessary even if you practice good hygiene
The theory that staying clean means you don’t need vaccinations is totally false as well as very dangerous indeed. Yes, good hygiene prevents the spread of disease to some extent. But it doesn’t completely eliminate all diseases. Some will incubate and develop no matter how clean and careful we are. Cleanliness has nothing to do with it.
In recent years, virtually every developed nation has seen significant drops in diseases like measles, chickenpox and Haemophilius Influenza Type B (Hib disease).
- 76-86% decrease in chickenpox from 1995-2001 in the US
- 94% reduction in Hib disease from 1992-1996 in Australia
- 78% drop in measles from 2000-2012 worldwide
On the other hand we’re currently seeing increased incidences of diseases like measles because so many concerned parents believed the discredited autism myth – more about that next.
4. Most vaccinated diseases DO still exist
It is true that diseases like polio, smallpox, cholera andmeasles aren’t as common as they were in many developed countries. In some cases, in some places, they’ve been eliminated altogether. But that doesn’t mean we should stop vaccinating our children against them.
In the early 2000s, low vaccination rates for measles saw a return of the disease throughout Britain and Western Europe. We even saw a measles epidemic in Wales.
As more of us travel farther and more frequently, the risk of catching diseases that have more or less disappeared from our home country increases. Take the unfortunate American tourist who had never been vaccinated for diphtheria, who died of the disease in 2003.
5. Natural immunisation is NOT better
There’s an argument that exposing your child to an infectious disease to let them develop their own immunity. But in reality life is not that simple.
Yes, surviving a disease naturally can sometimes make a child’s immunity last longer than it does with a vaccination. But the consequences can be severe. Measles, for example, can lead to brain damage and death.
The World Health Organisation says the side effects of getting immunity through actually suffering a disease are as follows:
- Hib disease – mental retardation
- Rubella – birth defects
- Hepatitis B – liver cancer
- Measles – death
Tetanus vaccinations have also been scientifically proved to be more effective than naturally-induced immunity.
Our expert recommendation? To always get the immunisation you need, when you need it.
If you still have concerns about any of the vaccinations we provide, we’ll be delighted to talk things through and dispel these dangerous myths once and for all.