What Can I Do to Ease My Child's Fear of Shots?

There's nothing my son hates more than getting a shot. Is there anything I can do to lessen his fear?
– Laurie

Getting shots can be tough for both parents and kids, but their benefits are worth the effort.

Try taking your son's mind off the shots by bringing a favorite toy or book to the doctor's office. You might have him count, sing a song with you, or look away (maybe at a picture on the wall). You might even let him wear headphones and listen to his favorite song during the shot.

When feasible, try to do something fun after the appointment. A trip to the park or playground can make the overall immunization experience less unpleasant.

Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: October 2009

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