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Are vaccines safe? Show more Show less

Immunisation is the process whereby a person is made immune or resistant to an infectious disease, typically by the administration of a vaccine. "Anti-vaxxers” have firm convictions about vaccines’ harmful effects and many people believe their children have been harmed by vaccines. Others have ‘vaccine hesistancy’: they are not inherently anti-vaccine, but are concerned or confused by the mixed messages they are exposed to and want to do the best for their children.

Vaccines are unsafe Show more Show less

Big Pharma puts profit above safety, and promotes misinformation about the dangers of disease that our bodies are perfectly capable of fighting off without vaccinations.
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Vaccines overwhelm the immune system

The immune system is not able to cope with the intravenous injection of multiple diseases at the same time.
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Health Warning Misleading

Context

For accurate information on the efficiency of vaccines, consult the WHO website.[1] At the turn of the twentieth century, children received one vaccine: the smallpox inoculation. Now they routinely receive 11 different vaccinations, in 20 different injections, before their second birthday. This is bound to have an effect.

The Argument

When a disease or virus enters the body naturally, through inhalation, for example, the vaccine takes much longer to attack the nervous system. When it is injected, the nervous system is instantly exposed to a large dose of the disease.[2] A child’s underdeveloped immune system cannot produce the necessary immune response to a vaccine. As a result, they are more likely to develop infections and other diseases while their immune system is in a weakened state. [3]

Counter arguments

From birth and in early infancy and childhood, humans are exposed to countless numbers of foreign antigens and infectious agents in the everyday environment. Responding to these stimuli helps the immune system to develop and mature. Newborn babies are exposed to millions of microbes before they even leave the hospital, far more than those contained in three or four vaccines. Compared with exposure in the natural environment, vaccines provide specific stimulation to a small number of antigens. Responding to these specific antigens uses only a tiny proportion of the capacity of an infant’s immune system.[4] If an infant’s immune system could be exhausted by multiple vaccines, one would expect vaccinated children to be at a higher risk of serious infections. Studies to investigate whether vaccines increase susceptibility to serious infections have shown no evidence of such an effect, with infection rates generally being lower in vaccinated children.[5][6] Extensive studies have been carried out on the possibility of vaccines overloading a child’s immune system. None have shown that the quantity of immune-alerting antigens causes a problem.[7] Children develop the ability to produce humoral and cellular responses to most vaccinations between two and six months of age. By six months of age, the child’s immune system can theoretically sufficiently respond to 10,000 at one time. In other words, 0.1% of a child’s immune system is “focused on” fighting the vaccination, leaving the remaining 99.9% to fend off other pathogens and infections (even this is a conservative estimate as B- and T- cells are constantly being replenished, meaning the vaccine will never “use up” 0.1% of the immune system’s capabilities).[3]

Framing

Premises

[P1] Vaccines overwhelm a child's immune system. [P2] Therefore, the child is vulnerable to other diseases and infections. [P3] Therefore, vaccines are dangerous.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] A child's immune system is capable of producing the B-and T- cells necessary to handle vaccinations at six months of age. [Rejecting P2] Therefore, the child is not vulnerable to disease. [Rejecting P3] Therefore, vaccinations are not dangerous.

Proponents

Further Reading

References

  1. https://www.who.int/topics/vaccines/en/
  2. http://healthimpactnews.com/2014/dr-suzanne-humphries-on-vaccine-safety-they-dont-want-you-to-hear-the-other-side/print/
  3. https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/109/1/124
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16091572
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12598383
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11773551
  7. https://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=what-every-parent-should-know-about-vaccinations-1-1750

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This page was last edited on Monday, 23 Mar 2020 at 14:31 UTC