Babies don’t feel pain was a once common held belief among the health care profession. But why would anyone ever think such an absurd thing up? I mean, it seems too far fetched to be even remotely true, but it was. What makes this even more absurd was that it was a common held misconception as late as the mid 1980’s.
If you just take a moment to think about this again. How could it be possible that babies don’t feel pain? They have a nervous system,which itself should be enough of an indicator that they do feel pain. Not only that, but as any parent will attest, when a baby feels any pain or discomfort they certainly let you know about it.
This is an excellent example of how medical misinformation can be spread throughout the medical profession. Not only how easy it can be spread, but that no one will question the veracity of the claims. So how did the medical profession finally come to their senses?
It wasn’t until the mid 1980’s that doctors and others in the profession started to catch on to what was going on with babies, and it was all thanks to immunisations and circumcisions. For some reason the medical professionals believed that babies were too primitive to experience pain. So confident were they that they even performed routine surgeries without anesthetic, using only a muscle relaxant so they didn’t move. But their motives weren’t sinister at all.
Running in parallel to the myth that babies don’t feel pain, was the very real risk of killing the baby during a surgical procedure. Believing that there was no pain sensation, it was believed a safer route to perform a surgery rather than administer any potentially lethal pain killer.
By the end on 1987 the medical field had recognized the error of their ways and confirmed that in fact, babies do feel pain. Although it was well and truly overdue, with the advances in pain relief and anesthetics, babies the world over no longer had to face the agonizing trauma of a surgery without pain relief.