Now that the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination and the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine are widely available to children aged 6 months and older, you may be anticipating the moment when your child looks to you for reassurance during a visit to the doctor.

New research published in the journal PAIN may provide useful information for reducing post-vaccination anxiety in young children. This study, which analyzed data from the OUCH Cohort, the largest study of its kind to date, followed children aged four and up while they received their various childhood immunizations.

Conclusions From The Research

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According to the study’s findings, the initial minute following vaccination is critical. The well-intentioned “coping-promoting” words made by parents, such as “you can do this” and “it will be over soon,” actually made the situation worse for their children. The same thing happened when we tried talking about anything else to distract the kid.

But by the second minute following the inoculation, the child was already feeling more at ease. Therefore the coping-promoting comments did have an effect. Preschoolers who exhibited more anxiety prior to immunization also exhibited more anxiety afterward, according to the study.

What Role Should Parents Play in Vaccination Procedures?

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The study’s authors suggest physical tactics like hugging, caressing, or holding a child’s hand in the first minute after a shot to help them feel safe and secure and then employing coping phrases in the second minute.

Each child, and our own parenting styles, are unique.

One of the things that make working with children as a pediatric nurse so rewarding is that kids have a rather short memory.

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Many infants and young children, in my experience, cry for a few minutes (a normal reaction) and then quickly return to their usual cheerful, playful selves.

It’s also important to consider age. A good deal of preparation time spent discussing the need for vaccinations with children aged three years and up can help. Most children aged 3 and up should have a firm grasp of the notion of “germs,” as well as the knowledge that vaccinations serve to protect against the spread of disease.

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