The buzz topic of the moment amongst the ‘Supermums’ (toddler group pals) is pre-school jabs. Has yours had it? (yes). Did you have to book it? (yes). Did it hurt? (yes). When do they need it? (3 years 4 months).
Our worse than useless GP sent us a letter telling us TGs was overdue. An ‘It’s due’ letter probably would have been more helpful, none the less we got it booked last week. I probably was supposed to know this and book it myself?
It never really occurred to me whether to challenge having them done – I’ve always followed the recommended vaccination programmes as the thought of any nasties is pretty terrifying.
I didn’t mention it to her on the lead up, the day or even in the waiting room. I have no idea if there is a best way of preparing the littlies for what’s coming, but I figured if I told her I was taking her somewhere where a nice person might hurt her a little bit, there’s no way she’d be cooperating getting in that car!
I had however done a bit of mum-research. Ie asking some mums of older kids what’s involved. 2 injections, one in each arm. A good doctor might get the second one in super quick, I even heard of them being done at the same time. One friend suggested taking a small reward to cheer them up on the other side, for being brave. Another friend reminded me to stock up on Calpol in case of a temperature or painful arms afterwards.
One thing was for certain, she was not going to be happy.
It hadn’t initially occurred to me that this was her first injection as a communicative tot. The last round was age 1 when she coped really well and was comforted by a massive snuggle with Mummy.
She seemed quite excited as we sat in the chair in front of the nurse. At this point I mentioned she didn’t know what was about to occur, so the nurse told me sternly this was probably a good time to do some explaining!
My description of having some medicine in her arms obviously freaked her right out, as she started to politely decline the offer, which then built up to full on struggle.
After the first injection it was pretty horrendous to be honest, we had to hold her to get the second one in, and she wouldn’t let us put plasters on so the blood seeped into her sleeves which really upset her.
The My Little Pony, presented as an award for bravery at this point, definitely helped!
My heart did break slightly on the way home as she sobbed “I never want to see that naughty doctor again! She cut my arm with a knife and made it bleed, and then cut my other arm with a knife”.
According to the red book that’s immunisations nailed for another 9 years. So that’s a relief.
So my top tips for surviving pre-school jabs:
- Don’t rely on the GP to book it, contact them for an appointment if yr child is 3 years 4 months or older.
- Have two arms free and ready for keeping toddler still and more importantly cuddling (leave baby brothers or sisters at home or in a pushchair).
- Don’t scare them too far in advance.
- Bring something nice to cheer them up…even if it’s a toy from home, a biscuit, or a comforter.
- We did have to give her some Calpol as her temperature did elevate slightly, and she was quite bruised, so make sure you have some in stock.
- Mums get treats after tough days too.