The COVID-19 vaccine is now available for everyone age 5 and older. It’s especially important as kids and teenagers can get very sick from COVID-19 and even experience long-term health complications. As we head into winter and peak flu season, it’s especially important to stay protected against the coronavirus. That’s why parents should get their kids vaccinated as soon as possible and protect them (and many others) from COVID-19.
The Benefits of Vaccinating Your Child
When children are vaccinated, they are less likely to get and transmit the coronavirus. Vaccinated kids also help protect any at-risk adults they interact with, including immunocompromised or older adults. Here’s what you should know:
The vaccine is safe. On November 3, 2021, FDA approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for kids. This means the vaccine is perfectly safe for children to receive! Kids can’t contract COVID-19 itself from the vaccine, which uses messenger RNA (mRNA) to create proteins that trigger immune responses. There is also no evidence of future fertility problems related to the vaccine and no higher risk of severe allergic reaction than any other vaccine.
Side effects are mild. While your kids may experience side effects after getting vaccinated, they are very mild and short-term. Common side effects include chills, tiredness, headache, nausea, pain or swelling at the injection site, muscle pain, joint pain, and sometimes fever. Cases of myocarditis are rare with the COVID-19 vaccine.
Vaccines help stop the spread. Data shows children play a significant role in COVID-19 transmission — and every time a virus transmits and replicates, there’s a chance of mutation. As new and more contagious variants like Delta and Omicron emerge, it’s even more important to stop the spread and limit opportunities for the virus to replicate.
By getting your child vaccinated, you’ll keep them safe from COVID-19 and help protect others from the virus. This will help us return to “normal” and give your child the opportunities to travel, socialize, and enjoy life as we did before the pandemic.
CDC Recommendations for Getting Kids Vaccinated
The most important step is to talk to your child about the vaccine. Go over what to expect when they get their vaccination, why it’s important to get vaccinated against COVID-19, and answer any questions they have. It is NOT recommended to give your child painkillers before the vaccine to counter potential side effects.While your child is getting the vaccine, make sure to tell the doctor or nurse about any allergies. Have your child sit or lie down during vaccination in order to avoid fainting and fainting-related injuries. They will also be observed for 15 minutes after their vaccine is administered, in the rare case of an allergic reaction. You can also bring a toy, coloring book, music, or another activity to occupy your child while they wait.Vaccines take some time to become effective, and keep in mind that it also might take time to schedule a vaccination appointment. During this waiting period, parents can follow these steps to protect their children from COVID-19:
Have your child wear a mask that fully covers their nose and face.
Maintain a six-feet distance from others whenever possible and avoid close touching.
Ensure your child practices good hygiene.
Avoid any unnecessary meetings, and try to gather with others outdoors instead of indoors.
Don’t travel far, and stay close to home as much as possible.
Keep your children away from older adults and immunocompromised family members.
Kids’ Health is a family-centric, independently-owned pediatric practice in Beverly, MA. We are committed to helping your child reach their best physically, emotionally, and academically, and combine personal service with modern technology to keep our patients healthy and happy.
900 Cummings Center
Suite 113 – T
Beverly, MA 01915