Vaccines can save lives, eliminating your child’s risk for life-threatening diseases. However, reports linking vaccines to Autism had parents foregoing vaccination. This article helps dispels misconceptions.
Why were vaccines linked to Autism?
The rise of autism, which shows up before age 3, happens to coincide with the increased number and type of vaccine shots in the first few years of life. Much debate was made around thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative used in vaccines. An isolated study in 1998 also suggested a link between the Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine with Autism.
But further research dispelled these fears. The data has consistently shown that the measles vaccine — either in a separate shot or as part of the MMR vaccination—doesn’t cause autism. In fact, the medical journal that published the study to retract it in 2004. Measles, on the other hand, can result in brain damage or death.
Thimerosal has also been cleared of any link to Autism. It has been removed from all childhood vaccines in the United States (manufacturers stopped using it in 1999), there’s been no sign of a slowdown yet of autism rates. For more information, visit the Center of Disease Control.