How To Soothe Baby After Vaccinations

baby vaccinations, 5S technique

When my baby had his 4th-month immunization, he developed a 38.3ºC fever and was fussy all night due to his shots. His first shot, which was carried out on his 2nd month, didn’t give him this kind of reaction. So, I sorted out some better ways on how to soothe baby after vaccinations and let me share with you the 5’S I have learned from a successful research headed by Dr. Harvey Karp in Southern California. I will also provide you here some other soothing methods you can do at home after your baby had his shots.

The 5’S (Swaddling, Side/Stomach Positioning, Shushing, Swinging and Sucking) — You Can Do Before and After Baby’s Shot

The 5’S has been approved by Academy of Pediatrics and proven to be effective to infants especially 5 months old and below. The five simple steps can be done to help you soothe your baby before and after his immunization.

You have to expect that there are shots to be administered to your baby all at once so make sure you know the drill, like asking about the shots, the kinds of it, what it’s for, and how many shots will be given per visit. Health practitioners usually discuss these things beforehand.

Step 1: Swaddling

Swaddling gives comfort to babies by wrapping them tightly in a blanket almost like a burrito. This also makes the baby calmer and recreate the soothing feelings being inside the womb. Before the shot, swaddle your baby and leave the body part just exposed to the shot — usually the legs or arms.

Step 2: Side/Stomach Positioning

Holding the baby either of these positions give easy access to health practitioners who will conduct the immunization.

Step 3: Shushing

After administering, my baby cried like 10 seconds and suddenly  it was all gone. Most of the babies normally react like this. Cradling your baby while shushing and hearing your voice that all is going to be fine will definitely soothe your baby.

Step 4: Swinging

While shushing, it helps more if you swing your baby gently to the motion he loves to. This generates a comforting feeling for them too.

Step 5: Sucking

The last step and absolutely the best way to calm them down is when you give your baby something to suck on — it may be your breast if you are doing breastfeeding or giving them a bottle.

After the shots, you will be advised that your baby has to stay in the vicinity for 15 minutes to check any reactions so to be safe you can feed your baby while waiting for that period. Allergic reactions may occur to some babies but these occur in very rare cases and if it happens, they know what to do for sure.

Other Soothing Methods You Can Do At Home

  • Giving your baby acetaminophen or ibuprofen when they developed a fever after getting the shot. Some parents give their babies before having the shots, but according to studies, the medicine interferes with the immune response when taken before the immunization.  However, this should only be done as advised by the pediatrician or a health nurse, you can ask about it during your visit too.
  • When your baby gets fussy, you can give some distractions like giving his favorite toy, feeding him with his favorite food, playing with him, etc. something that can get him distracted and forget the pain he feels for the moment.
  • Applying a numb cream or an efficascent oil over the injected part.
  • Prepare a sterilized bottle filled with hot water, put this inside a clean wash cloth and roll it over to the injected part, this will help lessen the sore.
  • Of course, give your baby lots of hugs and kisses!

Do you have some other ways on how to soothe your baby after vaccinations? Please feel free to share below.


8 thoughts on “How To Soothe Baby After Vaccinations

  1. This is a very good idea. I am not a mother nor am I pregnant but I have a great love for babies and I find this to be very knowledgable. It is informative, decorative to the eyes and straight to the point in its content. I would of had a friend that just had a baby and this is going to help me when I am actually babysitting and I need to comfort the baby.

    I like the adds to the side as well they relate to the information that you are portraying, and the super mom in blue jeans is a really nice catch phrase.

    All the best for 2016!!! Keep posting!!

  2. I’m not a mom or have a child, but I try to learn something new every day! I actually didn’t know swaddling was a term and that’s the one new thing I learned today. I also really like how you made the process simply by using words that start with S. Not sure if you did that on purpose, but it definitely makes it easier to remember. Thanks for the new lesson.

    1. Hello James, I am glad that you find this as a new learning. When you are ready to have your own family, I bet you will learn more of the baby and mom terms. :

  3. When my girls were babies (more than 29 years ago), we were always advised to administer children’s acetaminophen before the vaccinations. It’s interesting to see how the medical advice changes. I love the 5 S’s for comforting the baby. I had to laugh when you wrote that swaddling is like turning your baby into a burrito – so true! They look so cute like that, with just their head sticking out of the blanket, and it really does comfort them.

  4. Hey Jezza, nice article on soothing baby after vaccination. Now a days, due to advancement in science, latest vaccines are less painful. Still my son was not able to sleep the whole nights after shots.

    The 5 S you mentioned in your article are really quite interesting and I think mommies can try these ways too to relax their babies.

    1. Thanks for reading my article. Yeah I hope to spread the word on the magical technique of the 5S.

      Keep coming back for more of my baby, parenting and work from home tips. 🙂

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