Recently a post came out on Facebook about whether to get a Tetanus shot or not after stepping on a nail or glass. I was asked by another FB friend if I would post my response on my blog because they thought it was valuable information and had printed it out for their own use. So, this blog is my response.
Tetanus is a nasty bacteria that causes some effects like an inability to open the mouth, the old name for it being ‘lock jaw’. It also can damage the heart and other bad things. Here is key information about tetanus that is helpful to know when you step on a nail or a piece of glass:
Tetanus bacteria, or Clostridium tetani (c.tetani), is an anaerobic bacteria, meaning it can’t survive in oxygenated environments. Sometimes a deep wound cannot get oxygen and may be more prone to allowing c. tetani to multiply.
A very deep wound or a cut on rusty metal doesn’t automatically mean you have been exposed. Tetanus is primarily found in soil or manure and rarely around the home. In the days before automobiles were invented, horses in the streets and around our homes increased the likelihood of coming into contact with manure. This is no longer the case unless we live in a farm environment.
If the wound being treated bleeds, there is also less likelihood of an infection. Blood carries oxygen, but, as stated above, c. tetani can only thrive in an anaerobic environment.
Even if a deep puncture wound that does not bleed was caused by an object that had the bacteria on it, the act of giving a vaccination AFTER the exposure is of no value. The vaccine does not instantly kill the bacteria; the vaccine takes about two weeks for seroconversion to take place. Seroconversion is the production of measurable antibodies the body develops to a pathogen (harmful germ). Giving a tetanus shot after an injury provides no benefit.
If a deep non-bleeding wound in a farm-like environment with a lot of exposure to manure is sustained, the ONLY thing that could help (in addition to allowing the wound to bleed, and cleaning the wound with soap and water or hydrogen peroxide) would be the TiG (tetanus immunoglobulin) shot. Tetanus immunoglobulin is an anti-toxin, as opposed to a vaccine.
Currently there is no ‘tetanus only’ vaccine available in the United States. When you are offered this shot in an emergency room or by the doctor, they will administer either the DTaP or TDaP, depending on your age. These are both a combination vaccine consisting of Diphtheria, Tetanus & Pertussis (whooping cough) bacteria. Please be aware that the DTaP also contains up to 625 mcg of aluminum as well as other excipients (an additional substance that helps the medicine’s effictiveness), which can be viewed by following this link.
Homeoprophylaxis is available to educate your immune system if you come into contact with c.tetani in a kit with other diseases or in an individually designed program. For more information contact email@example.com. https://worldwidechoice.org/tetanus-shot/
As a gardener I have walked on a number of nails and other debris on my journey and though when I was a kid if that had happened my mother would send me off for a tetanus shot, what that is has changed since those many years ago (over 60). I have since changed my mind and treat those puncture wounds or cuts myself. Here is why. The ‘booster vaccine’ has so many bad effects including death, and I know so many other good things that would treat a wound, I wouldn’t get a vaccine. I’d certainly treat the wound though and do what I could to prevent a tetanus infection. You will see below exactly how I do that.
(But remember, I am a knowledgeable herbalist and I grow most of my own organic medicinal herbs. So, consider the facts and information below and decide for yourself. I’m not a doctor and I can’t be responsible for your decisions, but I can share what I know and have researched in the hopes that it will benefit others.)
Here is a recent post about all the common side effects of the vaccine: https://www.rxlist.com/tetanus-side-effects-drug-center.htm Tetanus (tetanus toxoid) “Booster Injection is a vaccine used to prevent tetanus. Common side effects of the tetanus booster include:
- hives, and
- rash near the injection site;
- stomach upset,
- joint pain,
- muscle aches and pains, or
- swollen glands.
Tell the doctor if you experience rare but serious side effects of tetanus booster including tingling of the hands or feet, hearing problems, trouble swallowing, muscle weakness, or seizures.”
Sooooo, side effect or effect, here’s why I pay attention to published side effects from medical sources:
Personally it is my opinion that there are no ‘side effects’. There are only EFFECTS. If you take something into your body or onto your body and it creates an effect other than the one intended, it’s an effect and not some weird something that happens coincidently. If it’s predictable from observation in the medical community, it is another effect of the drug or material. When most of the other effects are negative, personally I avoid them and attempt to find alternative processes or solutions. There are so many in the plant world, to me it’s foolish to expose the body to something with known negative effects, particularly in the case of the tetanus vaccines (called boosters) including death. (See ‘stats’ below)
Vaccines don’t work for a wound. In the article listed here: worldwidechoice.org/tetanus-shot/ , “Even if a deep puncture wound that does not bleed was caused by an object that had the bacteria on it the act of giving a vaccination AFTER the exposure is of no value. The vaccine does not instantly kill the bacteria; the vaccine takes about two weeks for seroconversion to take place. Seroconversion is the production of measurable antibodies the body develops to a pathogen. Giving a tetanus shot after an injury provides no benefit.”
Tetanus immunoglobin only thing that helps. “If a deep non-bleeding wound in a farm-like environment with a lot of exposure to manure is sustained, the ONLY thing that could help (in addition to allowing the wound to bleed, and cleaning the wound with soap and water or hydrogen peroxide) would be the TiG (tetanus immunoglobulin) shot. Tetanus immunoglobulin is an anti-toxin, as opposed to a vaccine.”
“Currently there is no ‘tetanus only’ vaccine available in the United States. When you are offered this shot in an emergency room or by the doctor, they will administer either the DTaP or TDaP, depending on your age. These are both a combination vaccine consisting of Diphtheria, Tetanus & Pertussis (whooping cough) bacteria. Please be aware that the DTaP also contains up to 625 mcg of aluminum as well as other excipients, which can be viewed by following this link.” Pharmaceutical excipients are basically everything other than the active pharmaceutical ingredient. They are part of the delivery system of the drug they are partnered with. Ideally, excipients should be inert, however, recent reports of adverse reactions have suggested otherwise.” (Australian Prescriber)
A ‘booster’ is a vaccine. It isn’t the “Tetanus immunoglobulin” as above.
So, if you go to an ER, your doctor, or a neighborhood primary care center with such a wound, they will offer you a ‘tetanus shot’. If it’s the vaccine, not the tetanus immunoglobulin, you know it isn’t going to do you any good. If it’s a child, and they try to insist, say you are going to go to your pediatrician and thank you very much. The greatest group of people who have died from the vaccine are young children. (see ‘stats’ below) Let them clean the wound, then leave. What is being offered – the Vaccine(s) – is not just for tetanus, there are the 3 combined vaccines that are only available together. There is no individual tetanus vaccine on the market.
Recently a FB post from a man asked about if he did the right thing by refusing the vaccine. I responded by saying “You may have saved your life. I won’t have one.”
What to do if you do get one of these wounds.
Since the bacteria is anaerobic (i.e. only survives where there is no oxygen), exposing the wound to oxygen – particularly by getting it to bleed since blood carries oxygen – you can help keep the wound safe by getting oxygen in there. I like using hydrogen peroxide since it works its way into a wound and bubbles oxygen madly. So, see below how I would handle this. And again, this is only my advice that you take responsibility for following.
Firstly – If you are handling the wound, start by washing your hands with soap and water, not anti-bacterial soap. Plain soap is more effective. Use clean cloths, towels, clean water around a wound to keep from further contaminating it.
If you step on a nail or glass, particularly if it’s dirty, rusty, was in the soil or a dirty environment this is the advice from several websites: Get the wound to bleed! This brings oxygen to the area and flushes it out. Sometimes puncture wounds won’t easily bleed, but if you can, squeeze it a bit to get the blood flowing. Sometimes it won’t. Just proceed.
Then clean the wound with soap and water – not antibacterial soap! Get any splinters or objects out of there carefully. Make sure no dirt or other debris stays. Use a tweezers or if it’s particularly stuck, dry it a bit, put a spot of crazy glue on it and attach a tooth pick or wood stick or something to help you pull it out. Don’t worry if it’s bleeding. Then wash the area with soap and water.
Make a wound wash. There are many plants and herbal preparations that will help keep the bacteria infection from infecting the wound. Here are a few. I keep witch hazel on hand I make from my own witch hazel bush, I always have aloe vera leaves on hand from the plant, and keep a number of essential oils around just for first aid purposes. I always have a big bottle of hydrogen peroxide available too. It wouldn’t hurt to have a little home apothecary of your own for just such situations. You can make a wound wash in advance and preserve it with some vodka. Just label it ‘For external use only’.
If you have access to fresh or dried herbs, you can make a wash of antiseptic herbs such as golden rod, oregano, yarrow, calendula flowers. Put some tea tree essential oil, or grapefruit seed extract, or wild or regular oregano essential oil and plantain leaves smashed up till gooey into a warm, not too hot, foot bath with about half a cup of hydrogen peroxide and soak the foot (or hand etc.) for half an hour or so. Other plant based things you can use are aloe vera gel, witch hazel, lemon balk tea, shepherd’s purse tea, lavender blossom tea or essential oil, or tea tree oil essential oil. Use what you have on hand or can get quickly. If you make a tea wash, make sure it is room temperature before using it on the wound.
Here are some sites with further information on what plants to use, how to prepare them, and wound care: https://advancedtissue.com/2016/05/plants-that-aid-in-the-wound-healing-process/, https://www.anniesremedy.com/chart_remedy_cuts.php, https://www.thepracticalherbalist.com/advanced-herbalism/herbal-first-aid-deep-cuts-and-wounds/Once the wash has done it’s job, use a poultice (see below).
You can use hydrogen peroxide directly on the wound by setting the foot or body part in a bowl with this, but it tends to be a bit harsh on skin so I prefer to add it into some water. If it’s on the bottom of the foot, have the injured person lay on their stomach and drop a few drops of hydrogen peroxide on the wound site and let it bubble. This cleans out the wound and is antibiotic. It also brings oxygen directly to the wound area and particularly kills the tetanus bacteria.
Once the wash has done it’s job, use a poultice. A poultice, also called a cataplasm, is a soft moist mass, often heated and medicated, that is spread on cloth and placed over the skin to treat an aching, inflamed or painful part of the body. It can be used on wounds such as cuts.
Make up a poultice of herbs such as chick weed, which should be crushed so the cell walls are broken (highly astringent, draws out debris and bacteria) and you can add powdered charcoal into a paste, held in place with some wrapped gauze or muslin fabric (make sure it’s very clean). Leave this on for an hour or so. You can leave it on overnight too.
Charcoal poultice preparation: Page 8 http://7song.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Herbal-First-Aid-Wound-Care.pdf
Remove the gauze and the plant material once it has drawn for some time, and compost the plant matter. Then rinse with warm water with a bit of hydrogen peroxide in it. You can also use a wound wash again too.
Another way to use the wound wash liquid you made is to soak some cloth in it, lay it over the wound, cover it with plastic wrap, secure it with tape or string, and leave it for an hour or more. This is called a ‘fomentation’ and it’s a word for a liquid rather than a paste kind of poultice. Replace it as often as you wish.
Dry the area. Inspect it.
Then put some antibiotic cream on the entrance to the wound and bandage. You can make your own antibiotic cream (ointment, salve) with plantain herb leaf, oregano essential oil, EVOO, bees wax. (Tea tree oil, thyme oil, etc. all work in the recipe, it’s not a strict thing, only use herbs that particularly draw or kill bacterial). Here is a video on how to make an ointment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4oZzz85l2E
See my ointments available only on this blog, below.
After cleaning and treatment, and spreading salve, keep the wound covered with bandages, gauze, or fabric, and if it’s on the foot, cover the foot with a sock that keeps out dirt. You might want to use a cane or crutches to keep weight and pressure off for a few days to help it heal. Change the bandage every day.
Watch for signs of infection like pain, redness around the wound, discharge. Soak the wound every day with the above and especially the hydrogen peroxide for a couple of days until the wound is closed and healed. The plantain in the poultice and cream above also helps with pain and is very soothing. Calendula flowers used in an ointment or wash is also very soothing and healing to the skin. I wouldn’t use yarrow in the ointment because you don’t want the mouth of the wound to close before the pathway of the wound is healed on the inside. Just as a note.
The above is just what I would do and have done. I’m not a doctor. But I have used herbs and plant medicine for over a decade with very good results. I hope this helps.
As to the use of a tetanus vaccine, I personally stay away from vaccines. They contain adjuvents also called excepients – definition below (what supposedly makes the vaccine work) which are almost always aluminum. Injecting aluminum into the body, with the research coming out now about how it causes Alzheimers and many other health problems isn’t a good idea, because all the usual ways the body has of protecting itself from toxic elements is bypassed by the injection.
Things to consider before getting a tetanus vaccine:
Tetanus Vaccines – Are they dangerous? – here are the stats:
“Information from the NVIC about tetanus vaccines – that they have caused death and many problems. “As of September 1, 2015, there had been 5,277 claims filed in the federal Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) for injuries and deaths following vaccination with tetanus or tetanus-containing vaccines combined with diphtheria vaccine, including 842 deaths and 4,344 serious injuries.
Using the MedAlerts search engine, as of August 31, 2018 there had been 26,834 serious adverse events reported to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) in connection with tetanus and tetanus-containing vaccines combined with diphtheria vaccine since 1990. Over 70% of
those serious tetanus vaccine-related adverse events occurring in children six years old and under. Of
these tetanus-vaccine related adverse event reports to VAERS, 3,031 were deaths, with over 90% of the deaths occurring in children under 6.”
“In 1948 there were 601 cases of tetanus reported in the U.S., the highest number of cases reported in one year.
In 1994 the Institute of Medicine concluded that there is compelling scientific evidence to conclude that tetanus, DT and Td vaccines can cause Guillain-Barre syndrome including death; brachial neuritis; and death from anaphylaxis (shock).
In 2002 there were 25 cases of tetanus and 3 deaths reported in the U.S. Tetanus is a much more serious problem in underdeveloped countries, especially among newborn babies born in unsanitary conditions whose umbilical cords can become infected with tetanus.
In 2009 there were 19 tetanus cases reported with two related deaths. Neonatal death from tetanus, which occurs in underdeveloped countries where newborns are exposed to tetanus in unsanitary conditions during the birth process, especially when the umbilical cord is cut, is virtually nonexistent in the U.S.”
Here’s the other side of the picture from people who profit from selling vaccines: The science about the tetanus bacteria is true. Their solution is questionable per the above.
Tetanus: The Disease
Tetanus (lockjaw) disease is caused by Clostridium tetani (C. tetani), an anerobic, gram-positive, bacteria with the ability to develop into a spore. Tetanus spores can be found in soil, manure, and in the digestive tracts of animals and humans. Additionally, tetanus has also been reportedly found in contaminated heroin and on skin surfaces.1 Tetanus bacteria do not survive in the presence of oxygen, however, are quite resistant to most chemicals and even heat.2 Puncture wounds, which do not bleed very much and are protected by tissue and skin from direct exposure to oxygen, can be the perfect environment for tetanus bacteria to multiply and cause infection.3
The incubation period for tetanus infection, from time of exposure to appearance of the first symptoms, ranges from three days to three weeks.4 Initial symptoms include muscular stiffness of the jaw and neck, headache, seizures, changes in heart rate and blood pressure, fever, and chills. Complications include fractures, vocal cord spasms, impaired breathing, pulmonary embolism, pneumonia, infections acquired in the hospital during the course of treatment, and death.5 Learn more about Tetanus…
In the U.S. today, tetanus vaccine is administered only in a combination shot (DTaP, DT, Tdap, Td) that contains vaccines for tetanus (T), diphtheria (D) and possibly pertussis (whooping cough) (P). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved twelve different combination vaccines that include tetanus toxoid vaccine. There are different rules for use of these vaccines by different aged groups. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) currently recommends administration of a tetanus containing vaccine (DTaP) at two, four, and six months old; between 15 and 18 months old; and between four and six years old. Another booster dose is recommended at 11-12 years of age (Tdap).
After a booster dose of Tdap vaccine, booster doses with tetanus – diphtheria toxoid vaccine (Td) are recommended every ten years throughout a person’s life.6 While the ACIP also recommends that pregnant women receive a dose of Tdap vaccine during each pregnancy, between 27 and 36 weeks gestation, regardless of a previous history of Tdap vaccine,7 this recommendation contradicts the information provided by the vaccine manufacturers. Learn more about Tetanus vaccine…
Tetanus Quick Facts
- Tetanus, often referred to as lockjaw, is caused by the Clostridium tetani bacteria and can be found in soil, manure, and even in the digestive tracts of animals and humans. Tetanus has also been reported in contaminated heroin as well as on skin surfaces.8 Tetanus is not contagious and cannot be transmitted from person to person.9 Tetanus bacteria can enter the body when a person sustains a deep cut, or even a burn10 and can also occur following abortions, elective surgeries, ear infections, pregnancy, dental infections, animal bites, and crush wounds.11
- The incubation period for tetanus infection, from time of exposure to appearance of the first symptoms, ranges from three days to three weeks.12 Initial symptoms include muscular stiffness of the jaw and neck, headache, seizures, changes in heart rate and blood pressure, fever, and chills. Complications include fractures, vocal cord spasms, impaired breathing, pulmonary embolism, pneumonia, infections acquired in the hospital during the course of treatment, and death.13 Continue reading quick facts…
- There are 12 different tetanus-containing vaccines licensed for use in the United States with 8 tetanus combination vaccines available for use in infants and children. These combination vaccines may contain one or more of the following vaccines: pertussis, diphtheria, hepatitis B, Hib, polio, and/ or polio. For adults, there are 4 tetanus combination vaccines available with 2 vaccines containing both tetanus and diphtheria toxoids approved for use in adults and children ages 7 years and older and 2 vaccines containing tetanus and diphtheria toxoid and acellular pertussis approved for use in children and adults ages 10 years and older.14
- According to the CDC, common tetanus vaccine reactions include injection-site redness, pain, and swelling at the site of the injection. Sometimes, however, the pain and swelling is significant and extends from the shoulder to the elbow. If this occurs, the CDC warns that additional tetanus toxoid vaccine doses should not be administered more frequently than every 10 years.15 Additional serious reported side effects following tetanus toxoid vaccination include anaphylaxis,16 17 brachial neuritis,18 Guillain-Barre Syndrome,19 20 acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM),21 arthritis22 23and myocarditis.24 Continue reading quick facts…
Tetanus Disease & Vaccine Information
Find the Information You Need to Make an Informed Vaccine Decision
Tetanus: The Disease
Learn More About Tetanus and Tetanus Vaccine
NVIC encourages you to become fully informed about Tetanus and the Tetanus vaccine by reading all sections in the Table of Contents below, which contain many links and resources such as the manufacturer product information inserts, and to speak with one or more trusted health care professionals before making a vaccination decision for yourself or your child. This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice.
In summary, working the land, working with one’s hands, walking in debris filled areas, growing a garden, homesteading, raising chickens or livestock, farming, or working around construction sites, we are especially exposed to the dangers of puncture wounds or deep wounds from sharp objects. Children especially can have this happen. So, knowing how to handle the wounds immediately keep the tetanus bacteria from being able to take over a wound and causing its big effects. Tetanus isn’t the problem it was a hundred years ago because we live in much more controlled environments and basically have better hygiene, but it’s out there. So, having a few things on hand for the inevitable cuts or puncture wounds is just a good idea. If you are in a survival mode, have a bug out bag, live off the grid, or live far from regular medical treatment, it’s especially good to know what to do and have some things on hand to treat such a thing immediately.
I have formulated a couple of especially good ointments for skin troubles, wounds, and after surgery which can be purchased on my sale page which can be kept on hand to treat these kinds of wounds:
Super Boo Boo Cream for anything related to skin – $18 per tin
Super Healing Herbal Salve for Dr. Borja for after surgery or recovery from wounds $20 per tin
Both are anti-inflammatory helping with swelling and pain, are antibiotic and anti-microbial (germs), and help with the soft tissues around wounds and traumas. Boo Boo cream is especially good for the ordinary surface cuts and bruises, rashes, minor infections, and ‘owies’. The healing salve is super powered for deep healing as well as for pain, swelling, and cell regeneration.
PM me for ingredients. FB Georgia Dirks
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Diann Dirks 1-22-2020
Here is more information from the vaccine people.
« Return to Vaccines & Diseases Table of Contents
(NOTE: Notice how many of the below references are about the ‘side effects’ from these vaccines. DD)
1 CDC Tetanus – Clostridium tetani Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
3 CDC Tetanus – Pathogenesis Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
4 CDC Tetanus – Clinical Features Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
5 CDC Symptoms and Complications Feb. 28, 2019
6 CDC Prevention of Pertussis, Tetanus, and Diphtheria with Vaccines in the United States: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) MMWR Apr. 27, 2018 / 67(2);1–44
8 CDC Tetanus – Clostridium tetani Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
9 CDC Tetanus – Epidemiology Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
10 MedlinePlus Tetanus – Summary May 23, 2018
11 CDC Tetanus – Epidemiology Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
12 CDC Tetanus – Clinical Features Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
13 CDC Symptoms and Complications Feb. 28, 2019
14 FDA Vaccines Licensed for Use in the United States Mar. 18, 2019
15 CDC Tetanus – Adverse Reactions Following Vaccination Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (The Pink Book). 13th ed. 2015.
16 Mayorga C, Torres MJ, Corzo JL et al. Immediate allergy to tetanus toxoid vaccine: determination of immunoglobulin E and immunoglobulin G antibodies to allergenic proteins. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2003 Feb;90(2):238-43.
17 Martín-Muñoz MF, Pereira MJ, Posadas S et al. Anaphylactic reaction to diphtheria-tetanus vaccine in a child: specific IgE/IgG determinations and cross-reactivity studies. Vaccine. 2002 Sep 10;20(27-28):3409-12.
18 Hamati-Haddad A, Fenichel GM. Brachial neuritis following routine childhood immunization for diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTP): report of two cases and review of the literature. Pediatrics. 1997 Apr;99(4):602-3.
19 Bakshi R, Graves MC. Guillain-Barré syndrome after combined tetanus-diphtheria toxoid vaccination. J Neurol Sci. 1997 Apr 15;147(2):201-2.
20 Newton N Jr, Janati A. Guillain-Barré syndrome after vaccination with purified tetanus toxoid. South Med J. 1987 Aug;80(8):1053-4.
21 Hamidon BB, Raymond AA. Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) presenting with seizures secondary to anti-tetanus toxin vaccination. Med J Malaysia. 2003 Dec;58(5):780-2.
22 Jawad AS, Scott DG Immunisation triggering rheumatoid arthritis? Ann Rheum Dis. 1989 Feb; 48(2): 174.
23 Kaul A, Adler M, Alokaily F, Jawad A Recurrence of reactive arthritis after a booster dose of tetanus toxoid Ann Rheum Dis. 2002 Feb; 61(2): 185.
24 Amsel SG, Hanukoglu A, Fried D, Wolyvovics M Myocarditis after triple immunisation. Arch Dis Child. 1986 Apr; 61(4): 403–405.
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