TO VAC­CI­NATE OR NOT?

It’s a topic that of­ten sparks heated de­bate. Here’s help in mak­ing in­formed de­ci­sions when it comes to vac­ci­nat­ing your child

Amazing Wellness - - GO HOMEOPATHY - By Avghi Con­stan­tinides, DHom, HMC, MA

Many

of my home­o­pathic pa­tients have asked me about the topic of im­mu­niza­tions. I sug­gest that par­ents be ed­u­cated on the topic and un­der­stand both sides of the story. As a par­ent, you are re­spon­si­ble for mak­ing health care de­ci­sions for your child. Do the re­search about the pros and cons of vac­ci­na­tions in or­der to make an in­formed de­ci­sion. Even in the face of med­i­cal and so­ci­etal pres­sure, the de­ci­sion to vac­ci­nate is ul­ti­mately in your hands as your child’s care­giver.

In my 22 years of prac­tice, I have known hun­dreds of fam­i­lies who have cho­sen not to im­mu­nize. All of them have done well and are healthy to­day. In the United States, most states al­low par­ents to choose whether to im­mu­nize based on their con­vic­tions. At most schools, a “con­sci­en­tious ob­jec­tor” form is ac­cepted in lieu of an im­mu­niza­tion record, ex­cept in the state of Cal­i­for­nia where a med­i­cal ex­emp­tion is re­quired in or­der to skip im­mu­niza­tions.

Home­o­pathic prac­ti­tion­ers nd that some pa­tients seem to have chronic ill­nesses that date from the time of an im­mu­niza­tion. Some med­i­cal ex­perts be­lieve that hav­ing child­hood diseases, like measles and chicken pox, is ben­e­fi­cial to the im­mune sys­tem and that the toxic e ects of the vac­ci­na­tions should be avoided. In ad­di­tion, im­mu­niza­tions do not guar­an­tee full im­mu­nity. Again, it’s a de­ci­sion that is yours as a par­ent.

Here are a few sug­ges­tions if you are con­cerned about im­mu­niz­ing your child:

Read pub­li­ca­tions out­lin­ing the pros and cons of im­mu­niza­tions and the treat­ment op­tions (see rec­om­mended read­ing be­low). If you de­cide to vac­ci­nate your child, al­low your baby to grow and strengthen for a few months be­fore giv­ing their rst shots (not im­me­di­ately af­ter birth). Don’t give shots when the child is sick (or just be­cause you hap­pen to be in the doc­tors’ of­fice).

As a par­ent, you face many choices re­gard­ing your child’s health and well-be­ing. ere are no easy an­swers—but you do have the ul­ti­mate op­por­tu­nity to use your unique knowl­edge about your child and your be­liefs to help guide you on the way.

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