Preparing for your child’s vaccination
Here are some tips to help you in preparing your child for their vaccination appointment
Choose clothes that you can remove or roll up easily. Children under 5 years of age usually have jabs in the thigh. Older children can have them in the arm. Thin cotton layers fastened with poppers are perfect for babies, and loose or short sleeves are ideal for older children.
Please bring your child's Red Book with you so that we can record details of the vaccine in it. Please also bring your child's BabyJabs immunisation record card so that we can also write in this. If this is your first visit to us you are likely to be given one of our cards when you attend.
Usually, the nurse will ask you to hold your child in your lap. If the injection is given quickly, your child won't even see the needle or notice that anything has happened. If you're nervous about seeing your child having an injection, we may be able to offer a nurse or another member of staff to hold them for you.
Older children generally find it less traumatic if parents explain to them that vaccination is a good thing. Use plain language to prepare your child for what's going to happen at the clinic.
At BabyJabs, we have some toys and books to help provide distraction; however you might want to bring your child’s favourite toy or comforter.
The vaccine appointments are 15 minutes long. On rare occasions children may feel too anxious to have the injection. The nurse will ask the consent of the parent if they want to continue, despite the child feeling distressed:
If the parent confirms they want to continue, they will need to assist the nurse in managing their child’s anxiety, and ensuring they stay still for the injection itself. If the parent requests and it is possible, we will invite another child-friendly member of the team to help out.
The nurse may stop the appointment if there is concern that the child is too distressed and may be injured during the injection, due to uncontrolled movements. This decision will be made if the appointment has gone over its allocated time and the parents have been unsuccessful in managing their child’s anxiety at this appointment. The parent will be asked to book another appointment at a later date.
If the parent does not want to continue due to high levels of anxiety of the child, then they will be asked to reschedule their appointment for an alternative date.
Late arrivalGive yourself enough time to get to your appointment without having to rush. Don't put pressure on yourself to be in and out of the clinic quickly. If you are going to arrive late for your appointment, you must let us know as soon as possible.
If you arrive more than five minutes late for your appointment we may not be able to see you in your allotted time. We will do our best to fit you in, but cannot promise to do this as our clinics are often fully booked. You must expect to wait until there is an appropriate space in the clinic.
Our priority is to administer vaccines safely.