First Time User? Enroll now.
COVID-19: Vaccine information and additional resources | Medicaid: The program is changing and you must take steps to keep your UNC Health providers
Home > Health Library > Helping Children During Immunizations
The following strategies may help decrease your child's discomfort related to immunizations.
Your baby is less likely to be uncomfortable or upset after an immunization if he or she is not hungry or tired.
During and after the immunization, you can help your baby by providing gentle comfort and reassurance.
Tell toddlers and young children beforehand about the upcoming visit to the doctor. But wait to talk about getting immunizations until right before it happens. Tell your child that he or she will feel a little prick that may sting. Avoid words like "shot" or "hurt." These can have strong meanings to young children, which can raise their fear of immunizations. Never suggest that vaccines are being given as punishment for misbehavior.
You can help ease the tension your child feels while getting a shot (injection) by using distraction techniques. For example, blow bubbles, read books, or talk about fun activities to help relax your child.
During the shot, act calm and confident. Don't increase your child's anxiety by being critical, apologetic, or overly reassuring.
Place a bandage over the area where the shot was given. Some toddlers and young children are afraid of blood or worry that medicine will leak out of the injection site.
When your school-age child or teen needs immunizations, talk about his or her expectations so you can address any misconceptions.
To help reduce the discomfort of injections:
Current as of:
August 31, 2020
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: John Pope MD - PediatricsAdam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Current as of: August 31, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:John Pope MD - Pediatrics & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2021 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.