Hi There Everyone!
It’s been a minute or two since I last sent out a newsletter check in and sent out some virtual support. As “ Back to School” vibes and anxieties start to settle and we officially find ourselves in Fall 2022…there’s a new wave of anxiousness and UGH sweeping through the area. So I thought I’d offer up some tips and ideas to support you as you support your kiddos around getting vaccines. I say vaccines because getting immunizations and dealing with fears, anger and general anxiety does not just apply to COVID. It just happens we have all been living through a Pandemic and as you know- kids pick up everything. They have heard the chatter and they have felt the feelings in their home, school and community related to the topic. And now they may be getting “ the vaccine “ too. Breathe,as Glennon Doyle says “ We Can Do Hard Things”.
Make a Plan – do not surprise or spring this on your kids. Typically a day or two before is good. But do not drive up and say “okay, now we are going to get shots”
Give your kiddo as many choices as possible- will you use your left arm or right arm? Which stuffie/special toy are you taking with you? Do you want to sit on my lap, hold my hand or be hugged when you get the poke?
Reward- It does not have to be big. Stickers, one candy bar, a special lunch, their choice of a game to play or an activity to do together. I always say- life is better with a cookie.
Things to consider:
*Your feelings, level of anxiety or fear when speaking to your kiddo(s) about getting vaccinated. Your calm and neutrality can be reassuring.
* The language you use. Say poke, instead of jab or shot, Another option is “We are getting you super hero medicine” or “ we are doing this to help us stay safe/healthy” “ When we take care of ourselves, we also take care of our family and community”. Is there a phrase or term you use in your family, use that.
* Larger locations may seem overwhelming and scarier – louder, more people and perhaps more chance of other kids being/getting upset.
* pain is not really at the location of injection. Pain happens in the brain. Distraction can interrupt the pain signals to the brain. Check out this cute device to help with just that:
I hope this has been of help to you and yours! Please reach and tell me how the vaccination experience went for your family. Also feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Always happy to schedule a time to chat!
Take good care Everybody!