Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Chicken Pox

Let's talk about it.
Ark Boy doesn't have it.
Neither does Farm Girl for that matter.
But it would be okay if they did.
They aren't getting the chicken pox vax (and several others - but we can talk about that later).
The American Academy of Pediatrics has said that the chicken pox vaccine is solely for the convenience of parents - who can afford to miss a week of work?
In addition, the vaccines effectiveness diminishes with time, as do all vaccines.
As a result all 20 year olds who have been vaccinated against chicken pox will need a booster in order to limit the chances of catching chicken pox/shingles which is much more unbearable and more likely to be deadly at this age.
However, what are 20 year olds doing?
Not many are watching the calendar and thinking: "hmm- 'bout time for that chicken pox booster"
These reasons coupled with the fact that we aren't convinced of vaccine safety we've opted not to give our children this vaccine.
As have several other parents that we are acquainted with.
But this means that it is vital that our children contract chicken pox, ideally, as early as possible.
What is a parent to do?
Chicken Pox parties.
You've heard of this, right?
If your child has chicken pox you announce it (typically on various forums) and invite local children to come and get infected.
Seems counterintuitive for a parent to want their child to get sick.
But it's essential.
And it's becoming increasingly difficult as more and more children receive this controversial vaccine.
It may seem ridiculous to put your child in harms way but I for one would prefer my children naturally contract the illness which gives them lifetime immunity rather that the alternative (the vaccine).
While I have thought that the vaccine was ridiculous from its inception
the parties seem equally ridiculous
But now Ark Boy is 2 and that's closer to 10 or so- when I'd feel less than comfortable with him having chicken pox.
So should we be scouring the internet for parties?
Evidently there is a yahoo group... but the group fears being shut down due to their... ummm... radical nature (I think not- a parent's got to do what a parent's got to do!).
Then again, at a recent playgroup a mom talked about having someone fedex her child's infected saliva so that she could give it to her son.
Don't think I can go that far...
then again- I never thought I'd consider bringing Ark Boy to a chicken pox party.

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