Friday, October 02, 2009

Antelope Anxiety

What is it about the names of diseases. Mad Cow Disease, Swine Flu, Chicken Pox...it is enough to make someone crazy. Someone like me.

It is no secret to anyone who knows me that anxiety and I live hand in hand. We are intimately aquainted and the stock of Purell has benefited because of this relationship.

Ironically, the fragility of my preemie son had a somewhat opposite affect on my normal phobic state.  Mabye it is because most things aren't really all that bad and are quite unlikely and are more annoying than anything else.  That being said I still am of the more neurotic mom-types.

But I have been torn about the new H1N1 stuff.  You can't hide away - not when work and daycare are real parts of your daily life.  Still, the flu wouldn't be a good thing to get.  So I should leverage his early birth and get the vaccine for our family right?  But then they (the undefined media type they) express doubt in the vaccine's safety and effectiveness.  Then I wonder if it is better to be exposed to the flu this year when it is likely to be more mild.  But then there is baby goat who shouldn't get the flu.

It is an anxiety tug of war, with a big ol' mud pit of indecision in the middle.

I figure we'll probably get the vaccine but I still waffle about it.

What special plans are you making for the flu season this year, if any?  And, are you planning on getting the vaccine for you or your kids?

6 comments:

Valerie said...

Good question. The flu shot always makes me sick, so I'm definitely not going to get it. I doubt Hans will get it either. We're young and healthy. Most doctors I know have just said to wash your hands and sneeze into your sleeve.

That being said, things get complicated when you're talking about a baby. If Cody could get the flu, I'd get him a shot. He would invariably catch it considering he catches everything. Instead he's getting his rabies and distemper shots. Woot! My best advice: talk to your doctor. Explain your concerns, both for and against the shot, and see what he/she has to say. It'll just be a bit of reassurance.

Rebecca said...

Don't you wish this were an easy answer? What are we supposed to do? H1N1 has not been studied, so any negative effects are yet unknown. At the same time, it's made pretty much the same way as the seasonal flu vaccine, which is known to be pretty safe. Add on top of that the fact that we are told to get both the H1N1 and the seasonal flu vaccine, and nobody has studied the effects of H1N1 vaccine PLUS the seasonal flu shot vaccine on adults or children. Are there potential risks of getting TWO flu shots in one season?

Like you, I am torn. The benefits are clear, especially for families like yours and mine where there are underlying risk factors. But, we don't know the potential risks, and the risks are scarier when talking about little babies. I believe strongly in informed choice - understanding benefits and risks and then making the right choice for our family. In this case, that's hard to do.

Naomi said...

I went in with my mom this morning and got the regular flu shot. H1N1 shot to follow, I believe. The line was long but fast moving. There were people there of all ages. I'm too scared of getting the flu in finals to be able to miss getting the shot...

constant gina said...

yes..Swine Flu vaccine...nice..!!!

Jana said...

Well, I actually ended up getting H1N1. It wasn't fun, but it wasn't the most awful thing to experience either. (I think having an emergency C-section and a baby in the NICU for 7 weeks puts things in perspective.) I am grateful I went through it while it is still a mild strain.

Dan & Sadie were both put on Tamiflu. If Sadie did come down with the flu, I am not really sure. I was so glad I was able to get her on the anti-viral meds.

After speaking with my pediatrician, I would say the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh the risks at this point. Children under the age of 5 are being hospitalized at twice the rate of older children, and that statistic doesn't take into consideration preemies.

I know that the hospital is the last place we want to end up again with our little ones.

Praying for all of our friends, especially Edward, to stay healthy this winter!

Marketing Mama said...

Avery is severely allergic to egg and can't have either flu vaccine, not even the nasal variety.

I can't have either b/c of breastfeeding her.

Mitch will have both.

I'm really torn about alex - not b/c of allergies, but b/c of the mercury in the shot. He's still at a tender age for potential off ADD/Autism and that mercury scares the shit out of me.