Home > Uncategorized > Don’t Worry … Be Happy!

Don’t Worry … Be Happy!

August 4, 2006

I just came across a great article on Blogging Baby about how a parent’s reactions and communications during painful medical procedures (like immunizations) affects the child receiving the procedure.  It turns out our instincts are wrong: don’t reassure or comfort.  Distract!

This quote from a children’s book captures the idea well: “If an adult tells you not to worry and you weren’t worried before, you better hurry up and start because you’re already running late.”

I have to say that I’ve seen both sides of this with our daughter.  I think it was her 9 month checkup and she needed to get some shots.  I held her a played with her and (without really consciously making a decision to) used a distraction technique.  There was a small whimper and a single crocodile tear, but that’s it.

At her 12 month checkup she had to get some more shots, and this time Alicea and I played the part of normal soothing parents.  BIG FUSS at that one.  Same with her 15 month checkup when the doctor was examining her (no shots) and we were totally in “it’s okay” mode.

Guess the clown nose will have to come out more often at the doctor’s office!

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