On Wednesday, my 19-month-old developed a rash. It seemed harmless at first…just some red spots on his chest and back. I wasn’t concerned, because he was still getting over a virus from last week.
After some discussion via text with my husband, we figured it was either: from the amoxicillin he was taking, a reaction to different laundry detergent, or a reaction to moisturizer.
But by bath time, the rash was angry.
It was red. It was raised. It was bumpy. It had taken over his whole body, minus his cute little cheeks (thank goodness).
So I did what all modern-day moms do. I Googled “toddler rashes.”
And wouldn’t you know, I found a lovely slideshow of rashes and my son’s rash looked exactly like a measles rash?
I thought for a second… Yes, he’s current on all his vaccinations, so I assume he’s had his MMR vaccine. But wasn’t I just reading about a measles case in the Philadelphia area?
Yes. Yes, I was.
Isn’t there a measles outbreak at Disneyland right now?
Indeed there is!
Also, according to the CDC, the first dose of the MMR vaccine works on 95% of those who get it. But what if Nate was in the other 5% who wasn’t protected? What if some unvaccinated idiot unknowingly went to one of the indoor play places we were at in the past two weeks and spread the disease around?
I mean, it’s possible, right?
Then I went through the other potential reasons I had come up with for the rash and was able to refute each one.
1. Why would a reaction to the amoxicillin show up after eight days of taking the medicine? That doesn’t make sense.
2. I frequently change laundry detergents and my kids have never had a reaction.
3. Again, my kids don’t really have sensitive skin. Plus, I used moisturizer on my son three days ago.
I sent a picture of the rash to my mom and my mother-in-law.
Their reactions: “It looks like measles.”
I called my pediatrician’s office. They told me to stop the amoxicillin and come in the next morning to have him examined.
Now, thankfully, IT WAS NOT MEASLES. They determined that he is just allergic to penicillin and all the -illins in that family.
But still. MEASLES SHOULD BE A NON-ISSUE TODAY!
Yet as of yesterday, there were 59 confirmed cases of measles from the Disneyland outbreak.
Of the 34 California patients who now have measles, 28 were not vaccinated against it. Six of this group of unvaccinated were babies too young to receive the MMR vaccine.
And that’s the part that really irritates me. People think that their personal decision not to vaccinate themselves or their children is just that– a personal decision. But how can you defend that stance when your unvaccinated self or your kid is the one who gets the disease and then infects babies too young to be vaccinated?
So guess what? It’s not just a personal decision. When you choose to have yourself or your kids be a carrier for these diseases that were all but eradicated, now you’re making it a public issue.
When did parents stop listening to doctors and assume that they were smarter than decades of medical research? If your pediatrician (after his many years of schooling) tells you to vaccinate your child, why do you think that you are smarter and know better? And if you are smarter and know better, why are you even going to a pediatrician in the first place if you’re not going to take his advice?
Vaccines have never been proven to cause autism, despite a popular misconception.
Now we have dangerous diseases like measles, mumps, and whooping cough making a resurgence, thanks to the anti-vaccination movement.
And you have parents who do the right thing by vaccinating their kids worried about contracting these diseases anyway, because the number of anti-vaxers is growing and threatening the rest of us.
Don’t take my word for it, because I’m not a medical expert. Just ask your pediatrician. There is no doubt that she will say, “Vaccinate your kids!”
Or if you don’t vaccinate, then stay home where you can’t infect the rest of us who play by the rules. Thanks.
Want to learn more about the importance of vaccines? Here’s some food for thought…
- I Used to Be an Anti-Vaxer (A Day in Our Shoes)
- 9 Truths That the Anti-Vaxers Need to Come Clean About (A Day in Our Shoes)
- Phony Anti-Vaccine Propaganda is Killing U.S. Children (Huffington Post)
- Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All (Dr. Paul Offit)
Hey, you! Stick around. My spidey senses tell me you might be interested in one of the following posts…