As parents, we are aware of the importance of giving our kids’ vaccine shots. We know how critical our children need these vaccine shots as they protect our children from contracting diseases that they are easily prone to.
The kind of common diseases that vaccines help protect our children from includes:
– HPV or Human Papillomavirus
How can vaccines help our child?
Although it is said that babies get their antibodies from their mother, these antibodies will only stay in the body up until they are six months. Babies are then at risk of developing serious illnesses which is why vaccines are required for them at a very young age. If vaccines are postponed or delayed, it might become too late to protect them.
How to make it a less stressful experience for children?
Even before our child reaches their second birthday, they are succumbed to at needle shots at least twenty times. The experience for both parents and children during the vaccination procedure can be upsetting as well as unpleasant. New parents, in particular, can become distressed with the procedure resulting in a very difficult experience for children.
Below are the top eight tips to help reduce your child’s pain and anxiety when it comes to getting their vaccine shots:
- Help prepare them and yourself
It is necessary to show your child that getting their vaccination is a good thing for them. It is also just as necessary to explain to them confidently what would entail during the procedure. However, while explaining to your child why they are at the doctor’s office, make sure to explain in a soothing and reassuring tone. Children can easily pick up verbal and non-verbal cues from their parents, so make sure that you do not appear agitated. Remind them also that you are present during the entire procedure to comfort them when they need it.
- Find ways to distract them
It helps to look for methods that can distract your child from feeling the pain of the needle shot. You can bring along toys that produce bright sounds. You can also keep their mind off the discomfort by singing songs or telling jokes and making them entertained. The more they become distracted, the less they feel the pain on their skin from the needle.
- Compensate with a reward after
Make your child feel better after the momentary sting from the needle by giving them a reward after the ordeal. This celebration of milestone can make your child feel a lot less anxious when it comes to getting their shots. Share activities that can be both fun for you and your child like taking them to the zoo afterward or going out for ice-cream.
- Assure them that it will be over very soon
Despite your best efforts to distract your child successfully, some children have less tolerance to stress during vaccinations. The upside is that the vaccination procedure is generally quick. Assure your child that the ordeal will be over before they know it. Better still, get all the necessary vaccinations completed at once, and then comfort them when it is all over.
- Stay calm and collected during the entire procedure
It is essential for parents to keep their cool during their child’s vaccination. Children can sense if their parents are just as fearful of needles as they are. This can result in a distressing situation for both the parents and child. If one of the parents have a phobia of needles, the other parent should at least be there to accompany their child during the vaccination.
- Use numbing medicine for a quick fix
You can always come prepared with a tube of topical numbing medication. This medication can generally be bought over-the-counter. Applying this on the child’s skin where the needle has just been can help reduce the discomfort of the vaccination. Although the medicine can’t completely remove the pain, the least it could do is help it subside.
Here’s a topical numbing cream that you can purchase here: https://amzn.to/2BrmMdO
- Dip a pacifier in sweet water
Some studies have discovered that a spoonful of sugar can help lessen the pain felt by your child after vaccination. As it is, letting your child taste a little bit of sugar can help reduce the discomfort from the needle sting. Sugar is particularly effective for babies who are below six months of age. You can opt in giving your child a bit of sugar before vaccination. Alternatively, you can also try dipping a pacifier in a water mixed with sugar and giving it to him to suck on during the vaccination.
- Hold or cuddle your child during the procedure
In stressful situations, children would always lean on to their parents for comfort. Establishing physical contact with your child helps them to cope better. If your child has already grown into a toddler, you can hold them by putting them in your lap during the vaccination. If they’re placed on the examination table, you can hold them during the entire procedure. You can also try holding their hand as well as the needle is being injected.
These tips might be easier said than done. However, completing your child’s vaccination can help you feel secured for their protection against diseases in the long run. Remember that the more vaccinated they are, the safer they will be growing up. The stress of vaccination will only be short-lived and following these tips can help lessen the discomfort felt by your child.
Moreover, pediatricians can also give suggestions as to how to make your child less anxious when getting their vaccine shot.
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