Measles are highly contagious, and right now the US is experiencing one of the worst outbreaks in years, and it’s still growing.
Measles is traditionally a childhood disease, and vaccinations have almost eradicated the disease. Almost, but not quite—measles is incredibly contagious, and the trend to skip the vaccine has created an opening for the disease to take hold and spread. Generally, it comes in on a carrier from a country where vaccination is less common, and then spreads like wildfire through the unvaccinated community.
So now, adults are just as likely to catch the disease if they don’t have childhood immunity or vaccination, and make up more than half of those affected by the current measles outbreak. We’re lucky no one has died this year from measles, but there is a risk for serious side effects, like pneumonia.
Ohio, California, and New York have the biggest outbreaks, but it only takes a spark (i.e. one traveler) to spread to other communities. It used to be just California that had an outbreak (lots of foreigners plus lots of unvaccinated people). The outbreak will likely grow worse in the future, as the population of people who have neither childhood immunity nor a vaccination gets older, and don’t have the immune systems to fight off the disease.
If you’ve never been vaccinated or aren’t sure, it’s recommended you get the vaccine (as long as you don’t have your health compromised in some other way), especially if you 1) live near an outbreak, or 2) are planning to travel outside of the country.
If you’re one of the people who can’t get vaccinated because of another health condition, you really need to watch your health. You no longer have herd immunity if you live near an outbreak (or even an area where not getting vaccinated is popular). Although measles is usually non-deadly, that’s for otherwise healthy adults. Pneumonia (a possible complication of measles) is far more complicated if you have a weakened immune system. Sleep, good nutrition, and a supporting supplement like colloidal silver are all good strategies!
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