5 Things People Believe More than Vaccines
By Cassidy Hall
As a pharmacy student, I have learned about the benefits of vaccines, and how they work. I’ve also heard the various reasons people choose not to vaccinate. Below are five things people seem to believe more than vaccines.
Don’t get me wrong. I was the 12-year-old girl curiously searching my horoscope during computer lab in middle school. We read about various topics that seem to all specifically pin point things that are affecting us as individuals. It’s our own perception that molds a horoscope to fit our lifestyle; while they are entertaining to read, do you even know who writes about your “future?” Most writers are authors who are often astrologers or spiritualists. Either way, they can not predict the future, yet more people believe that “they will have a week full of bliss” rather than information provided by the CDC about vaccinations…. Now, I’m not telling you to stop reading your horoscope, but take the time to read factual health information that is being researched all over the world for the benefit of YOU after you’re done reading your horoscope.
2. “Sugar Free” Label
Y’ALL, did you know that the FDA guidelines require that a food product must contain less than 0.5 grams of sugar per serving to be labeled as "sugar free”? While half a gram of sugar is rather insignificant, keep this fact in mind if you plan to consume multiple servings of a food. One serving of our favorite snack may be a lot smaller than you think… For example, one serving of Oreos is 3 cookies *major shock face* Who eats only 3 Oreos?! While we often over-trust information on food labels, we are quick to question ingredients in vaccinations. If you were to search the ingredients, you’d find that the scary ingredients like Formaldehyde, Aluminum, and Thimerosal (organic Mercury form) are all added to vaccines for the safety of the patients. While most of these are already present in our body or the food we eat, we are quick to question these additives when considering vaccination. Check out this link that will tell you more about these ingredients.
3. Fake Facebook News Articles
Ever have the newest, coolest news right on your Facebook feed at the touch of your finger tip? Your friends are tagging you in posts, thousands of comments to sort through, and you can’t believe what you’re reading. Well, FAKE NEWS. A lot of sites are smart by having names like “70 News” or “News Watch 33.” We’ve all fallen for it, and not all of the news is completely false in the end. Again, we must take the time to research these articles to decipher between fake or real information. This is true for vaccines as well. So many fake articles are out there to skew the facts. Do your research, people (but fact check your sources)! If you aren’t sure how to do research or fact check your sources, please reach out to us. We’d love to help you find that information!
Elvis Presley stood on stage in 1957 and stuck a needle in his arm that turned out to be the polio vaccine. The number of vaccines administered rose drastically in the following years. Today, we are so quick to believe celebrities on things like makeup/skincare, clothing, and more, including health. Everyone has a right to an opinion, but what makes most celebrities more qualified than your doctor, pharmacist, or other health professional? “Because they said it on T.V.” While celebrities may have bigger houses, better cars, and fancier clothing, they have access to the same resources we all have to educate ourselves about vaccination for ourselves and children.
5. “50% Chance of Rain”
I love checking my weather app to see “50%” and a rainy cloud. I always laugh as if it was a lame dad joke… 50% chance it will rain; 50% chance it will not rain. 50% means it may or it may not yet with that report most people will prepare for rain by grabbing a rain jacket or umbrella. We may peak outside to see for ourselves if it is cloudy or sunny which may sway our decision, but you would be better off flipping a coin because that is 50/50 as well. Heads for rain, tails for sun. Nothing is more annoying than walking around in rain boots when its sunny and 75 outside. As rain forecasts rise to 60, 70, 80% chance of rain, we instinctively believe it more (well, duh.). To put this in perspective, most routine childhood vaccines are effective for 85% to 95% of recipients. When pertaining to weather forecast these higher numbers would result in an umbrella, raincoat, AND rain boots; would you even check for rain clouds? What if there was a 0% chance of rain? Helllooooo, flip-flops! It has been proven time and time again that there is no correlation between vaccines and autism which in mathematical terms equals 0% chance of getting autism from vaccinations.
I realize that I am at an advantage for information about vaccines being easily accessible, as most people aren’t tested on this for 4 years. Health professionals learn the good and the bad. We read research articles, are tested on them repeatedly, handed a multitude of handouts, and do everything we can to learn all of the information for the benefit of our patients. Everyone has a right to their own opinion, and no pharmacist, nurse, or doctor can chase you down to give you a flu shot, but we are here to provide you information. Do a little online research and talk to a healthcare professional you trust. Be your own advocate. To begin learning more about vaccines, I recommend checking out the CDC’s website.
Cassidy is a pharmacy student at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, South Carolina. She was born and raised in Ehrhardt, South Carolina (which is near Bamberg which is near Orangeburg as she always has to tell people). Her first class in college was much larger than her graduating class of 16 people. She desires to help others and positively impact her patient’s health! She has one sister, loving parents and a plethora of animals back home.