So a couple of people made a comment on my post “Vaccine Alternate Schedule” that the MMR shot is not longer avaliable separated. I visited Dr. Sears website to learn more about this. I will most likely wait until Cooper enters preschool or the age of 4 until I give him the MMR vaccine. The reason I am choosing to do this is because of a family history of bad reactions to vaccines. If there was no adverse reaction to vaccines in my family, I would just have Cooper receive the normally scheduled administration of the vaccine.
I have include a link to Dr. Sear’s website if you are interested in reading about it. http://www.askdrsears.com/thevaccinebook/
I have also pasted what I think is important information if you are trying to make a decision about the MMR vaccine:
CHILDREN WHO HAVE NEVER HAD ANY MMR COMPONENTS
– Parents who feel confident in the safety of the MMR vaccine should go ahead and vaccinate at the recommended age of 1 and 5 years.
– Parents who were planning to do it separately because they have some worry about side effects should wait until a later age to get the full MMR. I suggest waiting until a child is either 4 years of age or enters school, whichever comes first. The reason for the 4-year recommendation is two-fold: 1. Many kids don’t enter school until age 4, so their risk of catching measles, mumps, or rubella is very low, and the risk that they would expose other kids if they got sick is very low, and 2. Most states only require one dose of mumps and rubella if that one dose is given at age 4 or older, because the vaccine works much better for older kids like this. Some states do require a second dose of measles, however. See the State Requirements section below.
– Parents who don’t feel comfortable leaving their children susceptible to these three diseases until age four, but want to delay it for at least a little while, can get the MMR at whatever age you feel most comfortable. If your toddler or young child is entering early preschool at age 2 or 3, you may want him to have the disease protection. If you get the MMR before age 4, your child would need a second dose around age 5 according to the regular vaccine schedule. This second dose is given because a small percentage of kids lose their immunity from the first dose and need a booster. From a health care cost perspective, it isn’t economical to test every child’s blood at age 5 to see which kids need a booster, then only give those kids a booster. So, the routine practice is to just give the two doses to everybody. If you don’t want to simply follow this routine 2-dose schedule, and instead want to try to get by with just one dose, you can do the one dose at any age, then get a blood test around age 5 to check immunity, then repeat the MMR if needed.
– When you do get the MMR, I would suggest getting it alone, without any other shots. You can pick any time in the vaccine schedule to do it. There is no exact time that I would place it into my Alternative Vaccine Schedule. It’s an individual choice for each parent. If you get the shot at 1, 2, or 3 years of age, you can then either get the booster at 5, or do blood testing to confirm immunity and skip the booster if your child is still immune to all 3 diseases. There is also the possibility that in a few years we will have separate M, M, R component vaccines again, and you can give a booster shot for only those diseases your child needs a booster for, based on the blood immunity results. If the separate shots are not available, and 1 or 2 parts of the first shot (but not all three) have worn off, it’s okay to get the full MMR again. Or, you could just leave your child susceptible to a disease. The choice is yours.