Whooping Cough-It’s a Reality
If you’ve picked up a parenting magazine recently, you’ve seen the ad for the whooping cough vaccination. An adorable baby making a adorable face with the headline saying something like, “What Mom? You haven’t vaccinated me against whooping cough?” Bottom line, whooping cough–one of those diseases that seems like it should’ve been eradicated long ago–is back. And it’s scary.
Whooping cough is an infection of the respiratory system. Wikipedia defines it as: Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious disease caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis. It is known to last for a duration of approximately 6 weeks before subsiding. The disease derives its name from the “whoop” sound made from the inspiration of air after a cough. A similar, milder disease is caused by B. parapertussis. Although many medical sources describe the whoop as “high-pitched”, this is generally the case with infected babies and children only, not adults.
Doesn’t sound too scary, but read these facts from KidsHealth: “Before a vaccine was available, pertussis killed 5,000 to 10,000 people in the United States each year. Now, the pertussis vaccine has reduced the annual number of deaths to less than 30.
But in recent years, the number of cases has started to rise. By 2004, the number of whooping cough cases spiked past 25,000, the highest level it’s been since the 1950s. It’s mainly affected infants younger than 6 months old before they’re adequately protected by immunizations, and kids 11 to 18 years old whose immunity has faded.” This year alone, five California children have died from the disease, reports television station KBSI 52.
Frightening stuff indeed, but, along with the vaccine, there are natural ways to prevent the disease as well. Nicole Plaisted Desert Sage, a certified herbalist with over ten years of natural medicine experience, describes her protocol in preventing whooping cough on the website, Natural Baby Pros. Click here to see what she recommends. And make sure everyone in your family, including yourself, is vaccinated against the disease.