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How can I get my 4 year old not to be terrified of shots?

She cries & gets so upset when it is time for her shots. She already says that she doesn't want to go to kindergarten because she doesn't want the shots. I have to take her next week for her check-up & shots & I am so dreading it!!!

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Asked by Anonymous at 10:51 AM on Jan. 12, 2010 in General Parenting

Answers (9)
  • Don't tell her about it beforehand. I've had to do this with my 9 year old since he was old enough to understand what a shot is. My 3 year old doesn't even cry while getting a shot, yet my 9 year old cries the whole way to the doctor's office if he's found out there are shots involved. i always hate for it to be a surprise, but sometimes it's easier to deal with than a child who's freaking for hours or days before. When my son asks me, i usually just tell him i don't know what the shot schedules are because they change so much and we'd have to see when we got to the office. Yes i know I'm lying, but I must have a little sanity in my day. I let him stay occupied with his DS on the way there and in the office.


    Answer by momjoy1027 at 10:56 AM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • When my daughter was 4 we talked about it. We discussed how strong and brave she was, what a big girl she was, etc. She was prepared and when it came time she for the shots she was very quiet and the color drained from her face, but she didn't flinch or cry. She was very proud about being tougher than some of the big kids. I bragged about it and took her for ice cream - we always do ice cream after shots. GL!

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:57 AM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • I'm so sorry mama, I wish I could help on this one. But I am the same way even now. I cried and cried each time I had to have blood drawn when I was pregnant. Even now, at 28 I am the same way.

    Answer by RutterMama at 11:18 AM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • You can't, basically. I know a lot of adults who are scared of shots.
    Explain to her that she can get sick otherwise, and that it's okay to be scared. Explain to her exactly what happens, and how much of a teeny tiny little time it takes. in and out. That's all.
    Take her for ice-cream afterwards, whatever happens, as being scared of needles / shots is perfectly normal, and everyone is scared of something.
    Be as relaxed as you can, and don't treat it like a big deal. Kids can pick up on your fear.

    Answer by Piskie at 11:21 AM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • don't get them-you don't have to get them for school-there are exemptions.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:26 PM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • Answered at 12:26 PM on Jan. 12, 2010 by: Anonymous
    don't get them-you don't have to get them for school-there are exemptions.

    That was NOT the question asked. If this mom wants to vaccinate her baby from the AWFUL diseases that could kill her - then GOOD FOR HER! The question was how she can ease the fear for her daughter!

    Answer by RutterMama at 12:52 PM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • So glad we don't vaccinate my poor babies have not been given so many shots they are afraid of needles. I have no clue how to make her less afraid I would be afraid if someone was trying to pump me full of chemicals seems like a rational fear to me.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:35 PM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • You cant. Thats something that people grow out of. Im 26 years old and Im horrified of shot. I dreaded going to the dr when I was pregnant because they always wanted blood samples. You should have seen me in the delivery room when it was time for IVs and things. I nearly passed out.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:38 PM on Jan. 12, 2010

  • Limited characters so long story short I had to get therapy in college it was so bad! So I know what I will do when my daughter turns four years old. Use what you like and don't, but it's advice from a professional and real nurses.
    1. Water! I was never told about it and I wish I had been told sooner. The more water you drink a week or 3-4 days before the needle, the less it will hurt. This works for the blood vessels but psychologically it works for shots too. It's a weapon, use it.
    2. Heat. Same thing for the blood vessels but works psychologically for shots too. The warmer your arm the less it hurts.
    3. Relax. Don't make her think it has to be 'in and out'. When she gets there, let her breathe in and out. I took twenty minutes to myself, don't rush her. A relaxed arm hurts less.
    4. Reward her!: edible treats are okay, toys are really good though because they are a lasting reminder how brave she can be. Good luck!

    Answer by rockwife22 at 1:57 PM on Jan. 12, 2010

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