I try to post this once a year or so, because most of the people who read my blog also play in the dirt, and with playing in the dirt comes minor injuries that you really don’t want to turn into anything nasty. So, if you haven’t had a tetanus booster in the last decade, or don’t remember having one, now is the time to get updated. Tetanus is not avoidable by good health practices, boosting your immune system, etc… – it is caused by a bacteria in the soil entering into your body through a wound – often wounds so small it would never occur to you that it could threaten your life. You should get one. So should your kids.
You should ESPECIALLY keep up to date if you farm or garden in any way, since contact with animal manures ups your risk. Agricultural workers who have failed to keep their vaccinated updated are the most likely people to get tetanus – and tetanus is one of the most horrible, painful diseases you can imagine, with a 10-20% death rate.
I try to stay out of the vaccine wars myself, there are plenty of people on this site who sing that song. For the record, I personally feel that if you really believe the world is going to change radically, keeping up to date on your vaccinations generally is a simple, commonsense way to keep lifespans long and kids healthy, but what I mostly feel obligated to do, as someone who advocates widespread involvement in farming is remind everyone to get their tetanus shots. As long as I’m increasing your risk by telling you to go out and play in the dirt, I want you safe.
The last time this came up, I was alerted to the fact that British guidelines are different – that the British emphasis is not on an “every 10 years” schedule, but on total number of vaccinations, so additional jabs may not be available to British adults – as long as you are sure you had all of the recommended doses, you should be up to date.
Who should not be vaccinated according to the CDC - a comparatively small number of people. We do not want to go back to the days when a tiny cut could lead to lock jaw. BTW, vaccinate your animals for tetanus as well – they don’t deserve it either!