Baby is holding her head up, sitting assisted and even rolled over (from tummy to back). She smiles often and laughs occasionally. She enjoys her Daddy’s company as well as mine. She also loves the attention she gets from her older sisters.
It’s back to the CDC website to look up what vaccines are recommended for two month old babies. There are a total of six shots recommended https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/hcp/imz/child-adolescent.html
First up is the second dose of Hep B. Since my baby is not at risk for contracting Hep B we decided not to vaccinate at birth.
The second vaccine is against Rotavirus. There are two different ones administered. The Rotarix which is a two dose series and the RotaTeq which is a three dose series. This is actually administered orally not through a shot.
So what is Rotavirus? According to the CDC website the symptoms are “severe watery diarrhea, often with vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain. Vomiting and watery diarrhea can last from 3 to 8 days. Additional symptoms may include loss of appetite and dehydration (loss of body fluids), which can be especially dangerous for infants and young children.” Mostly babies and small children contract this disease and may contract it multiple times. Both natural infection and vaccines fail to protect fully against all future infections. The main risk is dehydration which can land babies and small children in the hospital as they tend to get dehydrated much quicker. https://www.cdc.gov/rotavirus/about/symptoms.html
Rotavirus is spread through the stool of those infected. It is mostly spread by families, hospitals or daycares. Washing hands does not always prevent the spread of rotavirus. https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/diseases/child/rotavirus.html
What are the side effects of the vaccine? “Side effects are rare, usually mild, and may include fussiness, fever, and diarrhea. Some studies have shown a small rise in cases of intussusception within a week after the first or second dose of rotavirus vaccine. Intussusception is a type of bowel blockage that is treated in a hospital. Some babies might need surgery. Studies estimate a risk ranging from about 1 intussusception case in every 20,000 infants to 1 intussusception case in every 100,000 infants after vaccination.” https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/diseases/child/rotavirus.html
What is in the vaccines? RotaTeq ingredients: sucrose, sodium citrate, sodium phosphate monobasic monohydrate, sodium hydroxide, polysorbate 80, cell culture media, fetal bovine serum, vero cells [DNA from porcine circoviruses (PCV) 1 and 2 has been detected in RotaTeq. PCV-1 and PCV-2 are not known to cause disease in humans.] Rotarix ingredients: amino acids, dextran, Dulbecco’s Modified Eagle Medium (sodium chloride, potassium chloride, magnesium sulfate, ferric (III) nitrate, sodium phosphate, sodium pyruvate, D- glucose, concentrated vitamin solution, L-cystine, L-tyrosine, amino acids solution, L-250 glutamine, calcium chloride, sodium hydrogenocarbonate, and phenol red), sorbitol, sucrose, calcium carbonate, sterile water, xanthan [Porcine circovirus type 1 (PCV-1) is present in Rotarix. PCV-1 is not known to cause disease in humans.] https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/B/excipient-table-2.pdf
Now that we have these facts I have to ask myself if the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks. Diarrhea and vomiting does not sound pleasant. But is my baby at risk? Since my baby does not go to daycare, has never been in the hospital and has healthy siblings I don’t think she will contract Rotavirus. There is a slim possibility that I could come across the virus in a public restroom or elsewhere and spread it to my children. What about the side effects of the vaccine (the ones we know about)? My baby could have diarrhea from the vaccine or might be the 1 in 20,000-100,000 to suffer from bowel blockage. That would be awful. Now let me look at some of the ingredients in RotaTeq. Sucrose is sugar and I don’t normally give my babies sugar. Sodium hydroxide is used in unclogging drains and removing paint. Hopefully the amount in the vaccine doesn’t do much harm. Fetal bovine serum is taken from cow fetuses. Where are all the vegans speaking out against this vaccine? I’m not vegan but my husband can’t even bring himself to eat veal. I don’t think he would like the idea of killing baby cows before they are even born. Vero cells come from the kidney of an African Green Monkey. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2657228/ I am fine with consuming some animals but opposed to the idea of consuming cells derived from monkeys. Okay, let me look at the Rotarix to see if I like those ingredients better. Phenol red is a dye. Why is dye in a vaccine? I try to limit the dyes and food coloring in my children’s diet. I don’t let any dye enter my baby. Sugar again. I don’t think sugar in small amounts is that bad if it is from a natural source. Sorbitol is an artificial sweetener and I try to avoid those. Xanthan is controversial. It is used in many foods but some say it is bad for your gut. To be safe I avoid giving processed foods to my babies. Personally, I would rather chance the virus and dehydration that can be treated easily with IV fluids than to give my baby a vaccine filled with junk, that has dangerous side effects, and that may not even work.