Getting your child’s routine vaccines helps keep their immune system strong and protects them from potentially dangerous childhood diseases. The process of getting immunized usually requires your child to get a small injection in their aim.
Vaccination appointments can be intimidating for some young children, which is why board-certified pediatrician Rainilda Valencia, MD, with Micaela Marin-Tucker, PA-C, and Megan Reynolds, C-PNP, are here to help your child feel as calm and happy as possible during their appointment at Valencia Pediatrics in Victorville, California.
Here’s what you can do to help your child prepare for their vaccine appointment.
Tell your child what to expect
Start preparing your child for a vaccine appointment by being honest about what the appointment entails. Use clear language while choosing positive words, such as saying they can expect to feel a quick pinch or poke instead of using a word like “painful.”
When walking your child through their appointment, keep your voice relaxed, calm, and reassuring. This helps your child feel more confident and assured.
Explain why they need the vaccine
Let your child know, in age-appropriate terms, how getting immunized will help them. For example, you can tell a young child they’re getting vital medicine to keep from getting sick.
Prepare activities they enjoy
Ask your child if there are any activities they’d like to do while their vaccine appointment takes place. Your child might enjoy bringing a stuffed animal, watching a video, listening to music, or doing an activity like puzzles or legos during their appointment.
Involve your child in packing these activities before leaving for their appointment. Ensure they know those items will be available when they’d like them.
Listen to your child’s concerns
If your child voices concerns about getting vaccinated, practice active listening and ensure your child feels heard. Let them know that their fears are common and valid.
Soothe your child by explaining that making a plan and preparing for their appointment will help reduce their fears during the appointment. Let them know you’ll be in the room as a supporter throughout their vaccinations.
Make a plan for the appointment
In advance of the appointment, make a full plan with your child for the day of their vaccinations. Ask your child if there are any specific people they’d like to come with them to their appointment.
Find out if your child would like to be cuddled, hugged, or otherwise soothed by you while our team administers their vaccinations. As mentioned earlier, make sure they have all their favorite activities on hand for their appointment.
If your child is concerned about pain, ask them if they’d like medicine that makes the vaccines feel less painful. Our team can use a numbing cream or spray on your child’s upper arm to reduce their pain.
Immunizations can be tough for young children, but preparing them in advance and bringing them to our comforting, skilled team for compassionate care helps make the vaccination process as smooth and easy as possible. If your child is due for a vaccination, contact us to schedule their appointment by calling our office today.