Pox parties, pox lollies, and other pox wonders

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    Nov 12, 2011 10:39 PM GMT
    I was reading this article from Yahoo on parents sending each other lollipops infected with chickenpox in hopes of infecting their kids and making them immune to the virus.

    http://news.yahoo.com/swapping-chicken-pox-infected-lollipops-illegal-200633795.html

    I know these pox parties and other ways of intentional exposure are nothing new, but today they seem to have piqued my interest. I think it's really sick and dumb that parents do this, not only with the lollies, but with the pox parties as well. It's just the idea of a parent intentionally trying to make their child ill that disgusts me. Sure, I realize that chickenpox is a common childhood disease and that most of us become immune to it. But there are plenty of exceptions. Who knows what else you might expose to your child by taking them to these parties or giving them infected lollies. There's always a chance your child could develop more severe complications and die! Plus, even if you're an adult who had chickenpox as a kid, there's always a chance you can catch it again by exposing yourself to the virus in any enclosed atmosphere.

    A lot of parents do this to get it out of the way and to avoid being "forced" to vaccinate their kids. Well, I don't believe in making people vaccinate their kids if they don't want to. That's their choice and risk to take. Although good luck getting your kids into school without some vaccinations. But I don't believe these parties and candies are a safer alternative because you never know what someone else has that could be worse.

    If I had a child, I can't imagine making him/her sick if I could help it. I would do whatever I can to keep the child healthy through good hygiene habits and sanitation. My child may or may not get chickenpox by chance. If so, we'll deal with it then. If not, well, I hope my child will have decent health care as an adult! Fortunately I doubt I'll be interested in children anytime soon, so perhaps I'll be able to avoid this issue altogether.
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    Nov 12, 2011 10:46 PM GMT
    The anti-vaccination parents are the reason why whooping cough is back. Irresponsible fucks.
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    Nov 12, 2011 10:56 PM GMT
    In my early 40s I developed a painful, nasty skin rash called shingles, which was caused by the childhood chicken pox I had, before the vaccine existed. I do not believe the chickenpox vaccine can lead to shingles, only full chickenpox can cause it. Therefore, these parents may be exposing their children to continuing misery throughout their adult lives.

    Herpes zoster (or simply zoster), commonly known as shingles and also known as zona, is a viral disease characterized by a painful skin rash with blisters in a limited area on one side of the body, often in a stripe. The initial infection with varicella zoster virus (VZV) causes the acute (short-lived) illness chickenpox which generally occurs in children and young people. Once an episode of chickenpox has resolved, the virus is not eliminated from the body but can go on to cause shingles—an illness with very different symptoms—often many years after the initial infection.
  • Timbales

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    Nov 12, 2011 10:59 PM GMT
    I'm 4 years younger than my older siblings and missed them until my senior year of high school. It was horrible, they were everywhere - my eyelids, inside my mouth, etc. It was one of the worst things I've ever been through.
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    Nov 12, 2011 11:00 PM GMT
    Art_Deco saidIn my early 40s I developed a painful, nasty skin rash called shingles, which was caused by the childhood chicken pox I had, before the vaccine existed. I do not believe the chickenpox vaccine can lead to shingles, only full chickenpox can cause it. Therefore, these parents may be exposing their children to continuing misery throughout their adult lives.

    Herpes zoster (or simply zoster), commonly known as shingles and also known as zona, is a viral disease characterized by a painful skin rash with blisters in a limited area on one side of the body, often in a stripe. The initial infection with varicella zoster virus (VZV) causes the acute (short-lived) illness chickenpox which generally occurs in children and young people. Once an episode of chickenpox has resolved, the virus is not eliminated from the body but can go on to cause shingles—an illness with very different symptoms—often many years after the initial infection.


    Yikes! I've heard about shingles, but I think I'm going to read more about it as my knowledge of it is pretty limited and basic. I'm curious now.

    I guess I feel fortunate that I got chickenpox at 5 years old by chance. I got a bunch of pox scars on my forehead and on my brow ridge icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Nov 13, 2011 1:46 AM GMT
    u dont want chicken pox (primary herpes zoster infection) as an adult.
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    Nov 13, 2011 5:46 AM GMT
    This article has made me paranoid about hard candy for a while. A little while ago I thought about sucking on a Jolly Rancher only to think about this story and feel a little disgusted.
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    Nov 13, 2011 5:57 AM GMT
    divvy198509 saidu dont want chicken pox (primary herpes zoster infection) as an adult.


    THIS IS SPOT ON! There is a reason behind the mommy madness to infect their children. A child who is infected with chicken pox will normally mount a great immune response to the virus and cause it to go in hinding (in to your dorsal ganglia). Yes, once you are infected you will be infected for life, and it can manifest later in life as shingles in adults who have already had chicken pox; however, this only happens if your immune system has been compromised for some odd reason (very stressful situation that plays out over a long period of time, underlying disease like HIV that kills your immune system, etc.......).

    THE LAST THING you want is a first exposure to chicken pox as an adult. The manifestation of the infection is FAR FAR worse and can even cause death (especially in the elderly).

    In sum, it is better to be infected as kids than catch it as an adult.

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    Nov 13, 2011 5:59 AM GMT
    I agree that it's better to have this virus as a kid than as an adult, but what makes it acceptable for parents to expose their kids to chickenpox intentionally? What parent wants to make their child sick on purpose just so they get it out of the way? Seems to me they're taking a chance of doing more harm than good especially if these kids have who-knows-what-else besides chickenpox.
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:05 AM GMT
    I honestly don't remember if I ever had chicken pox. Maybe I did but I don't remember it.

    but yeah this is incredibly stupid and wrong.
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:23 AM GMT
    The act of bringing children into this world comes with the possibility of exposing to them to every evil that this volatile universe manifests. Chicken pox seems to be one of the lesser of these evils.

    There's a chance involved in just about eveything we do. Have you really not thought about this??? I just don't see chicken pox being that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things.
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:26 AM GMT
    pocketnico saidI agree that it's better to have this virus as a kid than as an adult, but what makes it acceptable for parents to expose their kids to chickenpox intentionally? What parent wants to make their child sick on purpose just so they get it out of the way? Seems to me they're taking a chance of doing more harm than good especially if these kids have who-knows-what-else besides chickenpox.


    That's true. I would not advise this exact practice, but it is not completely irrational.
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:27 AM GMT
    Stan904 saidI honestly don't remember if I ever had chicken pox. Maybe I did but I don't remember it.

    but yeah this is incredibly stupid and wrong.


    It is not the best way to go about preventing one's child from contracting this virus as an adult; however, it is definitely far less stupid than parents who have chosen not to vaccinate their children
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:30 AM GMT
    I mean what if you encouraged parents to have mono parties for their teens just so they can get that disease out of the way? Although I realize not nearly as many people get mono as they get chickenpox. Still, just the idea of making your kids sick on purpose. Sounds like dumb parenting to me.
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    Nov 13, 2011 6:50 AM GMT
    xrichx saidThe anti-vaccination parents are the reason why whooping cough is back. Irresponsible fucks.


    yeah, pertussis spiked in orange county a few years ago because of the fear campaign behind the vaccinations
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    Nov 17, 2011 5:12 AM GMT
    pocketnico saidI mean what if you encouraged parents to have mono parties for their teens just so they can get that disease out of the way? Although I realize not nearly as many people get mono as they get chickenpox. Still, just the idea of making your kids sick on purpose. Sounds like dumb parenting to me.


    I understand your point, but mono is actually a far worse disease than chicken pox and more than one virus can cause mono.