Each year hundreds of children become ill from diseases that could have been prevented by basic childhood immunizations. In honor of National Infant Immunization Week, The Children’s Center Rehabilitation Hospital is reminding families about the benefits of immunizations for children two years old or younger.
The Children’s Center Rehabilitation Hospital’s Outpatient Services provides childhood immunizations. Christina Manley is a Certified Child Life Specialist with the Hospital. She said there are things parents can do to make it less stressful when their children go in for their shots.
“Immunizations can be scary, but they don’t have to be. With preparation, fun distraction, and loving support from a trusted caregiver, a child can get through their immunizations with confidence and ease,” said Manley.
Here are some ideas for making shots easier on your child:
- Distract and comfort your child by cuddling, singing, or talking softly. Blowing bubbles will encourage deep breaths that will also help your child stay calm and relaxed.
- Be honest with your child. Tell your child in a reassuring way that the nurse is going to give them medicine under their skin to keep them healthy.
- Comfort your child with a favorite toy or book. A blanket that smells familiar will help your child feel more comfortable.
- Hold your child firmly on your lap, whenever possible. A chest-to-chest “bear hug” can be a good holding position for older infants and children.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccines have drastically reduced infant death and disability caused by preventable diseases in the United States.
Other milestones, according to the CDC, include:
- Through immunization, we can now protect infants and children from 14 vaccine-preventable diseases before age two.
- In the 1950’s, nearly every child developed measles, and unfortunately, some even died from this serious disease. Today, many practicing physicians have never seen a case of measles.
- Routine childhood immunizations prevent about 20 million cases of disease and about 42,000 deaths. It also saves about $13.5 billion in direct costs.
To keep your family safe, schedule your child’s appointment today. Along with immunizations, Outpatient Services also offers same-day sick child appointments, well baby, and child visits.
Office hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
For additional information on The Children’s Center Rehabilitation Hospital Outpatient Services, click here. To schedule an appointment for your child, call (405) 440-9866.