How to reduce the pain of vaccines?

Experts from the World Health Organization (WHO) have verified this: some parents, fearful that their child will suffer when they are pricked, delay their children's vaccination or even avoid it.

This organization, concerned about the impact that this behavior can have around the world, has decided to make recommendations to reduce the suffering of children during the administration of vaccines.

There are two types of measures: some for children of any age and others specific for babies and young children, and involve parents and health personnel.

Measurements for children of any age:

Healthcare personnel must be well informed and have a calm and cooperative demeanor. You must also take care of your expressions: instead of saying "now I'm going to click " it is preferable that you say "now I'll give you the vaccine ".
The child must be well placed. If it is a baby or a small child, it is advisable to be held by the caregiver; the rest of the children should sit up straight.
• In intramuscular injections, se discourages aspiration of the syringe (pull back on the plunger), because it can increase pain.
• When several vaccines are injected sequentially in the same visit, those that can cause the least pain should be given first.

Measurements for infants and toddlers

• The parent or caregiver must be present during and after the injection.
• Infants should be breastfed during or immediately after vaccination.
• It is advisable to distract children under the age of six with a toy, video or music.

WHO experts are convinced that these recommendations will be very well received by parents, young patients and health professionals: "When parents know what they can do to comfort their child before and during vaccination, doubts are dispelled " says one of the experts who have intervened in the adoption of these measures.

There are local anesthetics that can relieve pain at the time of vaccination, but the WHO does not recommend its use due to its high price, supply difficulties in some countries and the time it takes to apply.

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