Is Vaccinating Your Kids Safe? Yes, Of Course It Is
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Health and Wellness

Take It From A Former Needle-Phobic Child, Vaccinate. Your. Damn. Kids.

While I was terrified of needles, I was MUCH more scared of dying.

Take It From A Former Needle-Phobic Child, Vaccinate. Your. Damn. Kids.

Washington state--the state I reside in and grew up in--has declared a state of emergency because of a measles outbreak in Clark County. Not only is this emergency completely avoidable, but it will probably cost children and other vulnerable people their lives.

As a child, I was known to be terrified of needles. I didn't go to the dentist for three years after I ran out of a dentist's office having a panic attack. I had to be held down to be given routine vaccines and any time I stepped foot into a doctor's office, I'd pray I wouldn't have to endure any sticks from a needle. However, due to this, I didn't receive most of my flu shots as a child and didn't receive the HPV vaccine when it became available on the market. I only received the vaccines required by my school.

Now at 21, I've mostly conquered this fear. After experiencing various health issues and having to have blood work and shots, needles don't really scare me anymore. Sure, I still don't like them and having blood drawn is still daunting, but I can get through it.

How does this relate to the current measles outbreak in my own state?

While I was terrified of needles, I was MUCH more scared of dying (I have since been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, so these experiences definitely were a manifestation of this and while my experience is important to this article, understand that most children are probably not going to be as difficult as I was). Vaccines will prevent premature deaths in babies and children and DO NOT cause autism. (And, tbh, even if they did, how is autism worse than dying of a preventable disease?)

So, my main point is, even if your child is terrified of needles or are difficult at the doctor's office, it is worth the crying and the screaming. Not only will your child thank you as an adult, but it will be protecting your child from diseases that can kill them.

I have my parents and doctors to thank for consistently putting up with my crying and screaming when getting a routine vaccine. Not only did they help me get over a phobia, but they made sure that I lived a healthy life and set up good health habits for the future.

Within the last few months, I received both a flu shot and a Tdap. Both were quick, easy, and free. Even without health insurance (or good health insurance), most vaccines are cheap or free. Many yearly or common vaccines can be found at grocery store pharmacies such as Fred Meyer, Walmart, and Walgreens. You can also find places to get vaccines here!

A parent's choice to not be vaccinated should not extend to their child. A child could pay the price for their parent's beliefs, which is not only tragic but completely and totally preventable. So, parents of Clark County, Washington, and everywhere: please for the good of your children, their peers, and all vulnerable humans get your children vaccinated or they may end up paying a price for something they had absolutely no choice in.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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