Autism Rising

My husband and I got into a heated debate about the possibility of vaccines causing autism. My stance on this issue is purely an emotional one. And as we all know, when it’s emotional, it might block out any logic. I put my kids into the same situation as Hannah Poling- a healthy child developing in a normal pattern until she gets five vaccinations at eighteen months old. Her health and development went downhill from there and within just three months after the vaccinations, she began to show signs autism.

The number of children being diagnosed with autism is certainly rising. There is evidence that 1 in 150 children have autism. Many studies  suggest that the rising number is merely due to misdiagnosis. There are now broader ways of diagnosing autism whereas in the past, a child with behavioral issues would have been labeled as just being a difficult child. From  The Economist:

The upshot, subject to larger studies confirming her observations, is that Dr Bishop seems to have confirmed the cause of the recent rise of autism as being a change in the diagnostic criteria. As a good researcher should be, she is cautious and points out that finding one cause is not proof that others are not operating. But it now looks unlikely that there are more autistic people around than there used to be. It is just that it is now fashionable to acknowledge their existence.

AdvertisementIn the 1990’s and earlier, many believed that thimerosale, a preservative in vaccines containing mercury, was the culprit. Since 1999 it’s been removed from most vaccines but the cases of autism are still rising. Doesn’t that call for much more research? In my emotional mommy mind, I say yes. Lots more and soon, please.

Are the numbers increasing truly because we know how to diagnonse better or is  there a link between vaccines and autism? What are your thoughts? Do you think enough research is being done on autism? If the government admitted that there was a link between the two, even a very slight risk of your child getting autism from a vaccination, would you take the chance for the obvious benefits?

Catherine Prystup
About Catherine Prystup 2157 Articles
Catherine Prystup founded out of a desire to build a better community for Austin-area moms. She has three children, ages seventeen, eight and three years old.

4 Comments on Autism Rising

  1. We don’t vaccinate.

    The autism risk is not the only reason although it’s not for religious reasons.

    I hardly ever comment about vaccine stuff online because it IS such an emotional issue. After much research and debate, that is what we decided although we may selectively add a few at some point.

    I think more research is absolutely called for although I have to be honest and say that it would have to be done by a third-party for me to trust the findings. Pharmaceutical companies have too much to lose financially for me to trust studies done by them and even by the government.

    The FDA just stated that there is no danger from BPA even though data is there that suggests otherwise.

    My brothers and I were fully vaccinated and my youngest brother STILL got several illnesses that we were vaccinated against. And back when I was a kid there were far fewer vaccines being thrust upon us.

    Again, this is my personal stance and I respect everyone else’s position as it is a very tough choice to make for you family. The hardest we’ve come up against by far.

    When it comes down to it everyone just wants to protect their children while still trying to be respectful of how those choices affect others.

    I just don’t fully trust the big-business side of the whole thing, frankly it scares me.

  2. this is such a tough topic. i definitely agree that there needs to be A LOT more research, and i agree that it needs to be done by someone other than the pharmaceutical companies pushing the vaccines/profiting from them. i am EXTREMELY suspicious of the “new” vaccines…the ones for chicken pox, rhoto (spelling?) virus, and HPV. they are so new and so NOT researched…it’s scary how hard they’re being pushed.

    we did choose to vaccinate our DD against the more typical diseases. we used a slightly delayed schedule b/c our DD was premature. we were cautiously observant for all the boosters and had made a pact to stop vaccinating or delay vaccinations if we saw our DD have any strong reactions.

    i have to say that i am highly suspicious about the link between vaccinations and autism specifically b/c the most likely culprit, thimiserole, was removed nearly 10 years ago and the rate of diagnoses is still going up. i think genetics or some other factor has to play some kind of role b/c wouldn’t it stand to reason that most, if not all, kids would become autistic after vaccinations if they were the culprit? there has to be something else at play here. the timing is suspicious, too. yes, the big nasty vaccinations happen at 18 months to 2 years, and yes, that’s when signs of autism start to be apparent…but couldnn’t that be more due to the fact that 18 months to 2 years is when a child’s social skills become more apparent?

    it’s all so confusing. vaccinations and autism are such a hot topic. it’s so hard to talk about, but man, it needs to be talked about.

    i hope more moms weigh in…

  3. I have thought long and hard about this and have decided to vaccinate my son. After spending countless hours researching the research, I have come to the conclusion that there are more environmental threats than the vaccines. I have a few friends that work in the medical world and have treated babies that have gotten sick bc they were not vaccinated. Can you imagine your baby on its deathbed because he contracted a disease that could have been prevented? I never want to be in that situation.
    That being said, I personally believe that DIET has everything to do with the rise in autism. In my opinion, I think the increase of pesticides, toxins, and gluten in our children’s diet is what we should be researching. I havent even mentioned the toxins in their toys,clothes and crib.

    I wish it were easier and we did not have to worry about preventative care but we do( I hate that part about being a new mom.) What sucks is that it’s impossible to know if we are making the right decision until it’s too late either way.

    good topic.

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