Opinion

WATERCOOLER: Chicken pox parties a symptom of our times

HEARING that parents are willing to take children to chicken pox "parties" to expose their children to the virus sets fire to feelings that can shut down the ability to form a coherent sentence.

As a baby the virus struck me severely, I was told, as I have no memory of it.

READ MORE

The varicella-zoster virus then lodged in my spine and decades later, at a moment of stress, it struck in a completely unforgettable way, as shingles.

In a grimly humorous way, it was probably Christmas which triggered it.

While I was working on a Christmas Day my youngest sister had complications during the birth of her first child. At the same we were learning of the first indications Dad could have some form of dementia.

I remember going home feeling shattered in a way I'd never experienced before.
 

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT CHICKEN POX 'PARTIES'?

JOIN OUR WATERCOOLER CONVERSATION TODAY BY LEAVING YOUR COMMENTS BELOW


A week later some nasty little pustules erupted on the left side of my chest and spread quickly around my ribs. The rash was accompanied by a fiery itch which was impossible to quell completely.

Once the rash subsided, the itch and pain went away. Not all shingles sufferers are so lucky, as the virus can cause nerve damage that lasts for years.

Mum and Dad are children of the 1930s. They saw diseases like polio and whooping cough infect friends and relatives and destroy lives. When vaccines arrived that could almost guarantee immunity, it was a no-brainer.
 

Would take your child to a chicken pox 'party'?

This poll ended on 30 December 2015.

Yes, the sooner they contract it, the safer it is for them - 26%

Wilfully infecting my child with a disease? No thanks - 71%

Maybe, if my doctor suggested the idea - 1%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

There were no parties if we became ill. If Mum and Dad discovered any of our friends were sick, they were strictly off limits.

Vaccines do their work in two ways. Firstly they immunise a large proportion of the population. In the case of chicken pox it's about 80%.

Then herd immunity kicks in to inhibit the spread of disease, protecting the other 20% and those too young or ill to have the vaccine.

Sabotaging this by wilfully exposing children to disease is not a demonstration of free will. It does not free them from the predations of the big capitalist pharmaceutical industry.

It just leaves them and others in the community more vulnerable to a disease at its best irritating and at its worst lethal, but as it turns out almost wholly preventable.

Topics:  chicken pox editors picks



Community tackling ways to slow the suicide rate

Draft plan to reverse horrific suicide rate in the region

VIDEO: Christmas lights galore in the Clarence Valley

Lighting up Martin Crescent, Junction Hill for Christmas 2015. We want you to let us know where the best lights displays are this year.

It's time for a little Christmas cheer

Jail time for massage creep who digitally penetrated woman

SENTENCED: Timothy Moffatt, 68, was sentenced to more than 13-years imprisonment after more than 30 accounts of sexual assault.

Disgraced Coffs Harbour masseur sentenced for 13 years imprisonment

Local Partners

Koala stops traffic while taking an evening stroll

"I CANNOT believe it, just got home and had to give way to a koala crossing the Main Street.”


Community tackling ways to slow the suicide rate

Draft plan to reverse horrific suicide rate in the region

Tribute to remember rowing club legend

Greg Thompson at the 1991 Australian Masters. Greg also became Grafton Rowing Club President in the early 1990s.

The annual Head of the Clarence River Regatta is this weekend

Workshop to tackle Clarence Valley's suicide rate

A workshop to tackle the mental health issues around the Clarence Valley's tragic suicide figures will be held next Monday in the GDSC.

Health authorities seek community help to tackle suicide rate.

MOVIE REVIEW: Bad Santa 2

Billy Bob Thornton and Brett Kelly in a scene from Bad Santa 2.

NAUGHTY Santa sequel falls flat.

Coldplay bathes Brisbane fans in sea of colour

Chris Martin, lead singer of British rock band Coldplay, performs at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. Coldplay are in Australia for a five-show tour. (AAP Image/Dan Peled)

Frontman Chris Martin drapes himself in Australian flag

Sia, Keith Urban top Aussie Grammy nominations

Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban at the 50th Annual Country Music Association (CMA) Awards

Beyonce dominates with nine nods for 2017 Grammy Awards

New gallery connects humanity and nature

One of Craig Parry's amazing images to be shown at the gallery.

Well known photographer to display one metre images

No fear for Freya's final dance

TALENT: Freya Ramsey performs Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend at the Clarence River Dance Academy dance concert.

Freya prepares for her final Clarence River Dance Academy concert

Hailey Baldwin: I don't understand Taylor Swift's squad

Hailey Baldwin has taken a quick stab at Taylor Swift and co.

INSIDE STORY: The highlights of your $150 million CBD

GRAND PLAN: The highlights of the Ipswich CBD redevelopment and where they will be located.

Work on city heart's radical transformation to begin next year

VOTE IN OUR POLL: Sand mine opponents face serious dilemma

Public meeting for the proposed sand mine at Maroochydore last week.

Coast MP calls on Minister to stop KRA proposal with stroke of a pen

Developer's grand new multi-million dollar estate

NEW ESTATE: This is the only plan revealed by the property developer's new Billabongs Estate in Agnes Water.

DEVELOPER given the go ahead for a massive estate with 149 homes.

Banks reclaim Gladstone homes as job losses bite

LONG FALL: Property experts Heron Todd say, based on key market indicators, Gladstone is still travelling to the bottom of the market, with property prices set to get cheaper.

Property valuers say Gladstone housing market hasn't hit the bottom

The million dollar property to test Mackay's market

This Victoria St building will go to auction Tuesday and investors will be watching closely to see how much it sells for.

'High profile architect designed CBD asset' goes to auction

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!