Thursday, 2 August 2012

Do you 'flu vac?

Image from here

I am all for public health. I get that immunizing our children is probably a good thing for the community, even though it isn't necessarily the best thing for the individual.

And the human papilloma anti-viral, now available to boys? Well, that just makes sense. I am sure the incidence of cancers of the nether regions will reduce directly as a result.

What I don't get is this 'flu vac for all thing. I catch public transport. I hear the coughs and splutters every day. We are surrounded by sick people. They share the love. I sure don'tlike it, but I get it.

But why would a healthy young (ish) person get a 'flu vac? We get free 'flu vaccinations at work (one of the MANY perks of working for the government; that and QUALITY technology circa 2004 but I digress)...It protects you from only one of the many strains of influenza (and not particularly well if  my colleagues are a random sample).

Just use a handkerchief or tissue if you making sweet love with a virus. And wash your hands. You know, after the toilet, when you eat, when you attend to a sick child. That is your best defense in my opinion. And get rid of all those anti-bacterial products you clean your house with while you are at it. There's nothing like a few household germs to build your immune system.

'Flu vacs are for the very young and the very old. The rest of us need to look after our general health and stay at home if we are inflicted.

Bring on Spring. The orchestra of coughing on the trains is doing my head in.


Lisa said...

I get the flu vaccine every year. I have a chronic respiratory condition (actually, its just asthma) and so my gp gets me to get it.

The reason employers give you the flu vaccine for free is that they have worked out that its cheaper to pay for everyone's flu vaccine than to have to cover everyone for having lots of sick days in winter!

I've found that getting the flu vaccine prevents a bad cold getting worse but maybe thats just me?

Diminishing Lucy said...

I haven't ever had the flu vaccine. I have had flue once back in 1987, when I first left home, and once since.

A sniffle is not flu.

My children have remained unscathed from flu so far - I am not racing them for a flu vaccine.

I'm with you.


Mrs BC said...

I am also with you. I don't get the flu vaccine because I don't trust it. I'm not anti immunisation by any stretch, but a few years ago when they first bought it out, children fied as a result of taking it. There was a lot of back tracking and arse covering, but at the end of the day - I still don't trust it.


Mrs BC said...

*died*. not fied. Jeez!

Mrs Catch said...

If you're near immunosupressed or vulnerable people, you should get it. Doesn't cover everything, but something's better than nothing, right? We were "done" this year to protect Middle Son.

ANB said...

If it protects me from one strain of a horrible illness I'm happy to get it. True flu lasts weeks and is very debilitating and that's something I'm glad to reduce my chances of getting.

Mum on the Run said...

Oooh - can o' worms.
I'm also all for immunisations.
But I will NEVER give my child a flu vac again.
We are currently investigating whether the damage evident on Magoo's brain - and his loss of smell - was caused by the flu vaccine a couple of years ago.
The one I was against having, but then felt guilted into by a personalised letter that came to every family in WA.
Magoo was vaccinated and began having seizures within hours. He was hospitalised along with many other WA kids that year.
They have sinced admitted to a 'bad batch'.

Each to their own - but no flu vaccines in this household.

Elisa {with grace and eve} said...

I agree!! No flu vacs here! Had it once at the suggestion of my employer and guess who got the flu?! x

Mama of 2 boys said...

Couldn't agree more MM. My 73 year old Mum has the flu vac each year and has done so for the past couple of years. I am glad she does as she catches a bit of public transport. As for myself, not a chance. My work also offered the shot for free and I never once took up the offer while working there.
The human body is designed to fight viruses. Start messing too much with that natural flow and it can't be a good thing.
But I am with you, bring on Spring and the warmer weather, the cold months are just a bit torturous xo

momto8blog said...

the extremes of age, very young or very old, could die from the flu.
don't have sex and you won't get STD's.
I am leery about all the preservatives in all these vaccines anyway...some of them. like chicken pox vaccines come from stem cell line from aborted babies.

Sam-O said...

In our house we barely even get sniffles. My almost 6 year old has no idea how to blow his nose - he's never needed to. SO obviously flu vax is not on our radar. I do wonder about it though, because it seems that the people who get the flu are the ones who got the vaccine. TBH I think some people are prone to colds and flu and some are not and if the vax stops even one person from dying from whatever strain of flu they are vaxxing for this year it has to be a good thing.

But mainly, people need to learn how to keep their colds to themselves.

River said...

"use a tissue or hanky when coughing or sneezing". Hah! Tell that to every cougher, sneezer and splutterer I encounter on the buses and in the supermarkets! We were taught as kids to "catch" our coughs and sneezes, why isn't this still taught? In schools at least, if not at home. I don't believe in full-scale flu vaccines either. I don't get the flu, rarely even get a cold. Any sniffles I get are usually hayfever, so I don't get vaccinated. Maybe I will when I'm 65-70.

georgi hampton said...

I just wanted to correct a couple of things but before I do I also want to say I'm not "pro" or "against" flu vaccinations in general - I think that it depends on your particular situation and ultimately each individual should decide. However, that being said, each individual should decide with all the facts.

1. The flu, or influenza, is not the same as the common cold, nor is it a "bad cold". Colds are caused by human rhinoviruses and the flu is caused by influenza strains. They are different causative agents so getting immunised against the flu does not prevent colds/change the outcome of getting a cold.

2. Modern flu vaccines are "trivalent" meaning they protect against three strains of the flu virus. The particular strains they use in the vaccination are adjusted seasonally, using epidemiological data from the season before in the opposite hemisphere. As it happens, the strains of influenza virus that caused the most hospitalisations/serious infections the season before might not be the same strains that are present in the current flu season.. so that's why you can still get the flu even if you've had the flu vaccine. However, if you haven't been vaccinated you are also susceptible to strains that caused serious problems in the previous season.

It is a good idea to get vaccinated if you are a young child or an older adult as these people are more likely to suffer from complications from a nasty influenza infection. Some people also say that young children should get immunised as they often spend time in schools/preschools and in group situations like that it's best if the majority of children are vaccinated.. just like what a previous commenter was saying about getting her family vaccinated to protect a susceptible child.

Ultimately it is the individual's choice but it's also important to understand all the facts.

And me, personally? I don't have the vaccine (despite being able to get it for free) as I'm a young healthy adult with a healthy diet. I have had the flu once before, when I was already severely run down.

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