Thursday, October 22, 2009

hit me with your best shot

Mr. T had a routine doctor appointment today, part of monitoring his epilepsy treatment--is it a HIPA violation to share all of this? One wonders anymore... Anyhoo, they were doling out flu shots for $20 and a full waiting room sat with sleeves rolled up, ready for their inoculations. As we passed and he looked at me fearfully, I assured Mr. T that I have never gotten any of Team Testosterone flu shots and I'm not about to start.

I believe in common sense health care--I had epidurals when I delivered Mr. G and Mr. B--I would've done so with Mr. T, too, had I known how much giving birth huuuurts. Team Testosterone has had all of the required vaccinations--chicken pox, mumps, polio. These are harmful diseases whose spread is eradicated largely through vaccinations and that's a good thing. I dole out Motrin for fevers and bad headaches, but we're a healthy crew over here. Vigilant hand washing, a clean house, fresh air, plenty of fruit and vegetables and exercise combine with excellent genes. We wear seatbelts, brush our teeth, limit our exposure to chemicals because I'm green that way and consume mostly whole grains. Mr. T's epilepsy and my asthma aside, we don't suffer ailments much.
But I'm embarrassed to admit to folks around here that we don't "do" the flu shot--it's that popular. People put as much a premium on flu shots as they do car seats for toddlers. Saying I don't get the kids flu shots is akin to saying I let my kids run a dogfighting ring with wild Rottweilers. Doesn't go over well at all. I've never heard evidence that the flu shot prevents the flu, only lessens it's effects. And then the timing of that flu shot is so debatable--get it in November, and you're S.O.L come March when half the population is down for the count, you're right along with them. Get it in January and you risk catching the virus in December. Pffft. We skip it and guess what? Twice we've had influenza in our house. Twice in ten years. Taking my chances is paying off.

Our doctor came in and began asking Mr. T questions about the flu at his school. Yes, lots of kids have been out. Mr. B's class was down nearly 1/3 last week. The custodians are getting a work out from the sounds of it--it hits these rugrats like a Mack truck and they can't make it to the wastebaskets in time. A lot of clinics are telling people who suspect H1N1 to just stay home, they're that busy.

Then Dr. K asked if they'd be giving the flu shot at Mr. T's school. No, we didn't think so. "That's good," he said. "They should have been giving it over a month ago but it wasn't ready. Now it's too little too late and it won't do any good anyway."

And so I left the doctor's office feeling vindicated once more--and wondering how we can put a man on the moon, but we can't cure the flu.

20 comments:

  1. We've never done the flu shots and we've never had the flu. DOTR and I work with each other, the kids are relatively healthy. J4 had several years with perfect attendance...only missing it once because his 4th grade teacher from hell had the flu and wouldn't stay home. OTOH, my SIL and BIL are teachers and they always get a flu shot. But they always get deathly ill at least once or twice a year anyway. We sleep a lot, eat well, wash our hands and if we are sick we stay home and rest. J2 had H1N1, both of her roommates had it first and it lasted all of three or four days. It was just really contagious. She had it while we were in Hawaii and came home. They boys never got it. That was a really long way to say we don't do it either. I don't suppose you needed all those details. ;-)

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  2. I'm with you on the flu shots. We personally don't vaccinate and our kids are super healthy...never had ear infections, never been on antibiotics...we don't use antibacterial soap AND we let them play in the dirt...ooohhhh! People just need to take a deep breath and stop freaking out! I saw on the news the other day that hundreds of people waited over night outside a clinic to get the h1n1 shot.....really?!? Wash your hands people (for more then 2 seconds)! Stay home if you think you're coming down with something....and for goodness sake, put down that bag of McDonalds and eat something healthy!!!!

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  3. We don't do them either (shhh my husband is a doc) but I've never had the flu and neither have my children. You go with your bad self! xoxo

    Sc

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  4. I've always thought of flu shots being a benefit mainly to people with compromised immune systems, and people who work in health care.
    A lot of the time when people say they've got the flu, they really have a bad cold or some other virus.

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  5. We've never gotten flu shots either, and I don't understand why they are over-hyping the SEASONAL flu shot this year. Offering it in the schools for the first time ever. I don't get it.
    I am a little worried about H1N1 because it's the kids who have no immunities to it. I dunno...I think I will pass on that one, too. But, similar to you, I am hesitant to admit we don't do flu shots to people around here.

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  6. Good for you, Greens!! I've never had a flu shot and (:knock on wood:) have not had the "flu" in years. I just try to boost my natural immunity all year round!
    I did agree to have a tetanus shot this year though, since I haven't had one of those since childhood.

    For what it's worth, I don't believe in over-innoculating pets either! Just the minimum for whatever your pet needs, like Rabies or breed-specific stuff...and always check to see if any virus vaccine is "live", "dead" or "modified".

    I'm glad you refuse!

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  7. I agree. "They" make you feel like you are some kind of crazy when you turn the shot down, however. I believe you will be exposed one way or another and I would rather be exposed in a more natural way than being given it directly through a needle. One of my best friends is a nurse and so is her mother and neither of them or any of their nurse friends will get the flu shot. Isn't that interesting?

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  8. We do flu shots, but only because of the increased risk the girls and I have for severe respiratory infections and pneumonia. We need any help we can get to minimize the possible complications. That said, it has become increasingly harder for high risk patients to get flu shots in the past few years as people who do not have any indicators of increased risk flock to get theirs.

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  9. No flu shots here, ever. We're healthy, if we get it we'll stay home and take good care of ourselves. Chicken soup and panadol. Vicks. Snuggles. And then we're all better and our system is stronger.

    Now, my 93 year old granny? SHE needs the shots.

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  10. Ugh. I just keep going back and forth on it. I wouldn't be so freaked out about the flu but with a tiny baby in the house that changes things (in my mind). Also, the flu shots have mercury in them so we don't want those. And the nasal sprays are made with live viruses so we don't really want those either. What the heck do I do? Ahhh!

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  11. We get the regular flu shots (actually, flu mist) but aren't getting the H1N1 vaccines.

    BTW, this was what . Great minds think alike!

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  12. I ususally skip it but I'm on the fence this year because I have a small baby who had some respiratory problems at birth.

    It seems to have hit my daughter's school hard, but so far we've been OK. Hopefully that will continue.

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  13. I agree. The 2 times I ever had the flu shot I had the flu the worst. Definitely not a coincidence. I tend not to get the flu when I don't have the flu shot. There's got to be something messed up about all that.

    Side note: my son got chicken pox from the vaccination. Completely true. The doctor discovered this. Vaccines are good in theory....

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  14. We never had the flu shots and never will. Elizabeth has a completely compromised immune system and I'm not about to purposely expose her anything that could harm her. We're continuing to drink the alkaline water and we've been in excellent health, unlike the rest of the sickies in the Valley. I can't get over how many people are sick. Do you think part of it is psychosomatic?

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  15. This is tricky. Because of our family situation now with practically all of the elderly having extremely sensitive and fragile conditions we decided to get the family vaccinated. I don't know if I would've otherwise. I didn't want to risk putting someone else in danger. Hope I did the right thing.

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  16. We've never done the flu shots, either. I would say (shhhhhhh) that we never get sick, but then I'm afraid I'd jinx myself.

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  17. We get the seasonal flu shots because Amigo and I both have risk factors. Your decision is sound; you've thought it through. As for H1N1, this wave has so thoroughly inundated our area, it may be too late for vaccines to help.

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  18. Last year I had a horrible case of the flu, but it turns out the shot wouldn't have helped anyway, wrong strain.

    This is the first year we have gotten a flu shot. The only reason I did it is because I have no sick time and no vacation and I can't risk days without pay.

    Next year I am not getting one.

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  19. I just had this reaction at our playgroup this morning when I said we were not getting any flu shot. They made me feel funny for not doing it. I agree with you...we will try and stay healthy naturally.

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Spill it, reader.