Autism, Are Vaccines to Blame? The Great Debate

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Do Vaccinations Cause Autism?

 

As far back as vaccines date, there has always been a fanatical concern over their potential risks. The Autism/Vaccine debacle has been one debated for the better part of a decade now and continues to insight fear over vaccinating our children. I am in no way making any slight toward those who believe vaccines cause Autism. I merely hope to shine a light on misinformation and educate.

 

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“Did you know the first case of Autism dates back to 1908 and the feared vaccines weren’t around until the 1930’s?

The blind belief that vaccinations lead to such disorders is how the anti-vax movement came about and somehow still lingers and breathes air even though the article first linking vaccinations to Autism had no validity in any sense of the word.

 

“The “anti-vax” movement lost all credibility in 2005 when The Lancet fully retracted the paper that first suggested a link between vaccines and autism after its findings were debunked. In 2010, the study’s lead author and figurehead of the anti-vax movement, Andrew Wakefield, was further accused of fraud, ethical violations and scientific misrepresentation, and his license to practice medicine was revoked in the United Kingdom.” http://www.sabin.org/updates/blog/vaccines-dont-cause-autism-0

 

The scientific evidence confirming no link between ASD and vaccinations is astounding and vast. The biggest contributing factor to this misinformed belief falls to the plethora of counterfactual “information” widely available on the internet and the virality factor of such “trigger” filled ideas. There have been hundred’s of studies over the last 15 years all coming to the same conclusion; vaccines play no role in Autism Spectrum Disorders. ::the link above in the quoted information from sabin.org goes into more detail of these studies, I will not bore you with the details::.

 

The problem with this misconception is that it strikes fear on the home front.

 

Parents everywhere hear this information or read articles they can only assume are credible and they panic. Like any good mother or father, we fear harming our children in any way, shape, or form. Hence the anti-vax movement bore. Unfortunately, if the anti-vax ideology continues to spread it will lead to catastrophic repercussions. Outbreaks of diseases these very vaccines prevent will prevail once again and the loss of life will be immense.

The sole purpose of immunizations is protection. They boost your immunity and protect you from contracting deadly diseases that once claimed the lives of so many. The CDC released in 2014 an estimation that vaccines will prevent 21 million hospitalizations and 732,000 deaths among children born in the last 20 years.

 
Now, chances are you came across the viral case of one horrifically devastated mother that spread across the media like wildfire after the death of her daughter, right? Her child’s death was a direct result of Flu complications due to not being vaccinated. This is just one glimpse to the power of vaccinations and misinformed decisions.

 

If vaccines aren’t the culprit, what is?

 

The truth is, there is no definitive answer as of yet. Though, scientists have reached a recent breakthrough on this front. Identifying 18 new candidate genes for Autism Spectrum Disorder. ::Details on this study can be found here  https://www.medicalnewsbulletin.com/scientists-identify-18-new-candidate-genes-autism-spectrum-disorder/::. Much like any pick of the litter in mental health disorders, genes are a driving factor. Another notable cause is prenatal drug and alcohol exposure.

 

Most Frequent Question Asked

 

Why is there a sudden increase in Autism diagnoses?

 

There is broader diagnostic criteria now than there has been in the past.

 
Many children prior to advances in this diagnostic criteria are thought to have been misdiagnosed with schizophrenia, mental retardation, and ADHD. Autism Spectrum Disorder itself has a wide range of sub diagnoses such as; Asperger’s, Autism, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PPD-NOS).

 

Still in disbelief? Read the research collected by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

 

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33 thoughts on “Autism, Are Vaccines to Blame? The Great Debate

  1. As an Early Interventionist I worked with many children with Autism. I wish there was more information about what causes it…but it seems that there really isn’t just one answer. Thanks for sharing this information…Very helpful for parents or specialists needed to know more about the “link” between vaccines and autism.

    1. You’re welcome, so glad you found this informing. As a teacher you are more likely to notice these types of disorders in their early stages than a parent (too close) or a doctor (too few time with them).

  2. Great read!! It is such a touchy subject for sure. My personal story: I got rotavirus when my daughter was only a few months old. I got it. She didn’t…because she was vaccinated. Proof in the pudding for me, that I did the right thing, because babies can become so ill if they get something like that!!!

  3. This is a great article on such a touchy topic. I appreciate that you touched on the Autism Spectrum and the increase in diagnoses. This was a big conversation topic when I was in grad school for education, as it’s definitely changing the way people think about Autism.

    1. It absolutely is changing the way we look at Autism and differentiate between the variable diagnoses and possible causes. Mental health or psychological disorders are often difficult to conclusively diagnose, especially at a young age when the brain and psyche are’nt fully developed themselves but the rigorous research being done always opens up more insight. I love that they included this topic in your grad school program because educators are often the first to spot these disorders!

  4. Thanks for providing so many references and options for further reading… I think on a topic like this, it is so important for parents to research until they feel satisfied with their decisions.

    1. You’re welcome! I agree, it was actually a conversation with my cousin who is a scientist that sparked this post. There is a lot of misinformation out there.

  5. this is spot on-I tend to always side with science, and when people are recalling their “findings” and admitting fault, thats a big red flag to me that something isn’t right…thank you for posting this!

  6. Something you should add is that the person who led the research study which “proved” autism is linked to vaccines finally ADMITTED to FALSIFYING the positive results. The study that made everyone believe this in the first place was faked!

    1. Oh sorry you did write that…I have no idea how I missed that, I read the whole article but I guess my brain skipped over the different lettering or something. Awesome!
      Not about my messed up brain, but that it’s there!

    2. Good point! Thank you so much for that. I did touch on how he was proved wrong and lost his license but neglected to mention he admited to falsifying the information. I absolutely will add this!

  7. I really liked that you touched on the spectrum as well. Many people forget that by broadening and including sub categories this also raises how many people are diagnosed. The same can be said for anxiety and mood disorders like a bi-polar diagnosis. Correlation doesnt mean causation either. If the rise in autism is due to the rise in vaccines the same can easily be said about mothers joining the workforce, processed food, introducing technology etc. Anyway! Great article and solid research. It’s a brave topic to take on.

  8. More than anything, this encourages mom’s to research. And research good, informative articles not ones that provoke fear. Thank you for sharing!

  9. I have 3 boys. All 3 have been vaccinated. One of my boys has high functioning autism. You are absolutely right that vaccines didn’t cause this. He is special, unique, smart, and amazing and we love him for him. It is hard not knowing why there is no clear explanation as to what causes autism, but I’m ok with that too. Thanks for this blog post!

  10. I was scared to click on this but I was pleasantly surprised. While we don’t fully vaccinate, the “worry” of autism is not at ALL our reasoning behind it-we actually have an autistic son! But people are so quick to believe that’s why we don’t. And people are so quick to simply not vaccinate because of the “fear” of autism. It’s sad to see people making misinformed decisions

  11. Thank you for sharing the research and the facts in such a succinct article. I totally agree – parents (especially new parents, like myself) can be bombarded with information and it is hard to know who or what to believe. Especially in our digital age, it is so easy to ‘Google’ everything and assume what we read is accurate. So important to get the REAL facts out there.

  12. Thank you for this, and for using facts! A really interesting read, I’ve vaccinated both kids and do sometimes get comments from some anti-vax friends, which is a bit of a struggle, so glad to read this!

  13. Such a touchy subject.
    My family doesn’t vaccinate. We have our reasons. It’s not because “it can cause autism” at all. Thanks for opening the topic, though. It is something that needs to be discussed regardless of which way you go. 🙂

  14. Bravo! Well researched, well-written and on-point. Unfortunately those who refuse to vaccinate cannot overcome their own confirmation bias. It’s sad and scary at the same time. Sad because kids will be exposed to preventable debilitating diseases and scary because they are just trying to do what they think is best for their children. We’ve come so far from the days of double digit infant mortality that many people can’t grasp the concept of a viral infection ravaging their little ones. And one last point: Autism is not the worst thing that can happen to one’s child. I know many people who fall into the spectrum and the biggest disservice to them is the mere fact that they’ve been labeled.

    1. First, thank you for such positive feedback. Second, you mentioned something in which I personally believe is the biggest hurdle on both sides of the “debate” (I dislike referring to it as a debate because it’s absurd to debate fact) However, the fact that vaccines have been so effective tends to be its biggest “loss” in today’s debates. People just don’t fear what they can’t see and luckily we don’t see or experience these diseases in mass due to effectively preventing them. Unfortunately, I fear we will again face such if the message continues to virally plague sucesptible moms and dads screens illiciting the almost instictually blind protection response. (I may have just made that a word haha, just go with it)

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