Hello,
I've been reading a lot on vaccines and I see a lot of parenting websites that advise against vaccination because natural immunity is more effective that artificial immunity. They don't say vaccines are dangerous or anything just that basically playing around in the mud is more effective protection that a vaccine is. So I was wondering- Does getting a vaccine somehow impede acquiring natural immunity? Can't you get a vaccine and still build your own natural immunity if the vaccine wasn't going to be effective enough to make you completely immune?

Thanks so much,
Emily

vaccines stimulate natural immunity - there is nothing artificial about them. The evidence for the benefits of immunisation to the individual and the community are overwhelming. Letting your child get a potentially life threatening infection which could easily be prevented is not a sensible course of action for the overwhelming majority of the population.

That said this is not a medical advice site and if you have concerns about immunising your child then you should discuss them with your own doctor/paediatrician.

Because David is a medical doctor, he has to be more careful than the rest of us about being very clear that he is not giving medical advice.

As a palaeontologist, though, I am less constrained, so let me say it clearly: get your kids immunised. Not to do so would be dangerous and irresponsible, not only towards your own children but also towards the broader community. Anti-vaxers are conspiracy nuts of the worst kind. Please ignore them, and instead go along with the literally universal advice of trained medical professionals.