Oh, do I hate the doctor’s appointments when the boys have to get shots. The obvious reason that moment of the stick hurts. We protect our babies as much as possible and then we have to hold them still while they get poked. That look of ‘How could you’ breaks my heart almost as much as the tears.
Here are some ways to make vaccination/shot day at the doctor better and hopefully a little easier – for mommy, daddy and munckin:
-Knowledge is power so learn a bit before you head to the doc. Find out a bit about the vaccinations your child needs. Your pediatrician will have lists and schedules for you. Some sites that I found after a quick search are:
-To tell or not to tell – You know your child. If more information will help, then let your child know that there will be shots at this visit. If you are like me, then you will even talk to your baby about it.
-Something to snuggle should come along – favorite stuffed animal or snuggly blanket always make us feel better.
-Bring entertainment – distractions can be good. Coloring books, reading books, cars, Legos, etc. Getting bored at the doctor’s office can add to the nervous.
-Consider a treat after – I am not above bribery where appropriate. Go for a special lunch, get some ice cream, buy a small toy (keep it small), stop at the park, etc.
-A dose of Tylenol half an hour before the shots is optional too. I have no idea if it helps, but my mom said, “Honey, it couldn’t hurt.”
Being me, I also go armed with essential oil blends to ease the worry and the ouch.
Before the shots, when the worry starts to build, I offer the boys’ ‘Sleep Spray,’ which is a blend of sweet grass hydrosol and sandalwood. I spray it on their faces (eyes closed of course), mine and daddy’s too. It helps us all take a deep breath and relax.
After the shots, I dab some Lavender with Helichrysum around the bandaids. Reapply later when the bandaids come off and/or if the area is tender the next day.
Later, when the cranky starts and your love is a bit out of sorts (this can just be the stress of the day, not always feeling crummy after the shots), I draw up a bath. The ¼ cup of bath salts are a blend of sea salts with 6-8 drops of Lavender, Vetiver, Helichrysum and Sweet Marjoram. All meant to comfort, ease any pain and reduce inflammation or swelling from the shots.
Get your love snuggled into bed a bit early and start another fun day tomorrow.
If you are concerned at any point about your child’s reaction to the shots, follow the instructions given to you by your health professional (i.e. call the doc’s office or go to your after-hours clinic)
PS I did not and at this point I am not going to tackle the subject of get your child vaccinated or not. I will leave it simply that I see the need for keeping the general population safe, but I worry that the tiny immature immune systems are bombarded too early.