Getting children all of their immunizations is the best way to protect them from diseases. Recent outbreaks in diseases such as measles, mumps, and whooping cough show the continued need for vaccinations.
Children under the age of 2 are most at risk from serious childhood diseases because they don’t have all the defenses they need to fight off infection on their own. Immunizations protect them from:
• Bacterial pneumonia • Meningitis
• Chickenpox • Mumps
• Diphtheria • Polio
• Flu • Rotavirus
• Hepatitis • Tetanus
• Measles • And More
With National Infant Immunization Week now underway until April 29, now is a great time to make sure your children have all the shots they need.
Take these steps to help prepare and comfort your child when it is time for shots.
• Pack a favorite toy or blanket to comfort your child.
• For older children, calmly tell them that shots can pinch or sting, but won’t hurt for long. Provide a distraction, such as listening to their favorite song.
• Touch child soothingly and talk softly.
• Make eye contact with your child and smile.
• Hold child on your lap and show them a toy.
• For older children, tell or read a favorite story, or have them look at a poster or item in the room.
• Hold or cuddle your child.
• Ask your doctor for advice on using a non-aspirin pain reliever when you get home.
• Get an updated copy of your child’s immunization record to give to your child’s day care, camp, or school.
• Make your child’s next appointment for immunizations.
• For older children, give praise and support, and let them pick a special activity for later in the day.
• Use a cool, wet cloth to reduce any redness, soreness, and/or swelling where the shot was given.
• Watch your child for the next few days. You might see a small rash or notice a fever. If your child has any reaction that concerns you, call your doctor or seek medical attention.
Spring is a good time to make sure your child’s shots are up-to-date, as the law requires children to have certain immunizations before they enter day care or school unless they get a medical or religious exemption. As your children get older, there are other immunizations they might need to fight illnesses such as meningitis.
Ask your doctor what shots are right for your child and make an appointment today.