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So turns out I have one kid (he has anxiety) who has a panic attack about shots. I'm on a catch up schedule so he has a lot to get caught up on, I'm tempted to make it less traumatizing by doing a bunch at once to cut down on how many visits we make for shots. Is it safe to do that though? To get all the series' started he would need to get Polio, Hep A, Hep B, MMR and Hib at the same time. :/
 

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He's had his first MMR right? I understand anxiety all too well.
While I think it wouldn't be a problem do you think that you would worry more about reactions? Is his big fear of the pain that comes with the needle? If so you could always ask for a prescription for emla cream which very effectively numbs the skin.
I think in your position I might consider two per visit - that way each vaccine can be administered in a different arm or leg so tgat if he does have any localized reaction you can tell which one caused it.
 

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He's had his first MMR right? I understand anxiety all too well.
While I think it wouldn't be a problem do you think that you would worry more about reactions? Is his big fear of the pain that comes with the needle? If so you could always ask for a prescription for emla cream which very effectively numbs the skin.
I think in your position I might consider two per visit - that way each vaccine can be administered in a different arm or leg so tgat if he does have any localized reaction you can tell which one caused it.
I do worry about reactions. :( It's definitely a pain issue for him but his doctor said that emla wouldn't help much because it only numbs the top layer of skin. 2 per visit is what I was originally planning.
 

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So turns out I have one kid (he has anxiety) who has a panic attack about shots. I'm on a catch up schedule so he has a lot to get caught up on, I'm tempted to make it less traumatizing by doing a bunch at once to cut down on how many visits we make for shots. Is it safe to do that though? To get all the series' started he would need to get Polio, Hep A, Hep B, MMR and Hib at the same time. :/
You can give all of those vax at once. It is safe. The only issue to consider is timing but assuming your child has not had any of the previous doses then all of these can be given now. When I was catching up my son, he had DTaP, Polio, MMRV, Hib, HepB and PCV in one round. That's the only time he ran a fever after shots, but I think it was more related to the MMRV (which has a higher risk of fever) than due to the combination of shots he got. Doing them all at once definitely made it easier on us. To be honest, I stress out more about sitting in the waiting room than actually getting the shots and I think that waiting is hard on the kids, too.

There are actually catch up schedules that you can follow. That would be the safest way to go to get it all done quickly. There is a certain timing/spacing required for immunity.

Here's the background info:
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/downloads/child/catchup-schedule-pr.pdf

This is an interactive scheduler that can give you an idea of how many vaccines to get at one time, and the spacing (this may be based on a slightly outdated schedule, but most changes are very minor).
https://www.vacscheduler.org/scheduler.html?v=patient
 

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Something to consider:

Research measuring cortisol, a hormone associated with stress, has determined that children do not experience more stress when receiving two shots as compared with one shot. Therefore, an increased number of visits for individual shots will mean an increase in the number of stressful situations for the child without benefit. In addition, there is an increased potential for administration errors, more time and travel needed for appointments, potentially increased costs and the possibility that the child will never get some vaccines.


http://www.autismsciencefoundation.org/sites/default/files/CHOP2.pdf
 

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This makes a lot of sense - and at 4 maybe don't talk about the visit in advance. As a kid it was the worrying about the upcoming visit that always ended up being worse than the actual moment. We also had two nurses who would give the shots simultaneously to speed things along a bit. If you are comfortable catching up with multiple shots at each visit fewer visits might be less stressful in the long run.

Sorry to hear than emla wouldn't help - I remember being in your position and wishing I could make the moment less scary for my girls. We thankfully never had an adverse reaction but it doesn't mean it wasn't hard to see those big tears on their cheeks.
 

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My experience with emla is that it was chancy whether it numbed my skin or not, and it wouldn't have made an intramuscular shot not hurt. Emla has to be applied an hour in advance, and kept on the skin with tagaderm or saran wrap or something. If your four year-old has anxiety issues, you'd be adding to his anticipation - and you can't guarantee it would work, or that, if it worked, it would help.

I don't know whether it's better to space out the shots, or try to do them all at once. I can see issues either way. Anxiety is tough for anyone, more so for little kids. Poor baby.
 

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You should do whatever you think he'd prefer. Lots of shots but only one visit, or a few visits but fewer pokes. It depends on what he finds less scary.

Remember to get a nice ice cream cone or whatever he'd like afterwards.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks everyone, I think he would do better with more shots but fewer visits but I'll keep looking into it.
 
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I should add that when my son got the shots he had MMRV, DTaP/IPV/Hep B (Pediarix), Hib and PCV so it was only 4 shots total- 2 in each thigh. Not too bad. See what combo shots your pediatrician offers. Those help a lot when getting kids caught up (and just in general).

But be cautious with MMRV, especially with the 2 year old because of the higher risk of fever. (Though it looks like you're not considering varicella right now anyway).
 

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I should add that when my son got the shots he had MMRV, DTaP/IPV/Hep B (Pediarix), Hib and PCV so it was only 4 shots total- 2 in each thigh. Not too bad. See what combo shots your pediatrician offers. Those help a lot when getting kids caught up (and just in general).

But be cautious with MMRV, especially with the 2 year old because of the higher risk of fever. (Though it looks like you're not considering varicella right now anyway).
Our pedi does have pediarix but I don't know about any other combos they may have. I am definitely leaning toward doing varicella for the baby but the big kids already had pox. I'm not sure about doing MMR with DTaP though, that particular combination worries me for some reason..
 

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Our pedi does have pediarix but I don't know about any other combos they may have. I am definitely leaning toward doing varicella for the baby but the big kids already had pox. I'm not sure about doing MMR with DTaP though, that particular combination worries me for some reason..
Hm. I can understand that. Those two always scared me too. DTaP and MMR probably have the most alarming reputations (other than maybe Gardasil.)

The thing is, though, that the full series of DTaP is 4 shots. A booster is typically given with MMR, Var and Polio at 4-6 years. They can also be combined at 15 mos in some clinics. It's very common for kids to get those two, safely, at the same time.

So if you want to minimize visits you'll most likely have to give the MMR and DTaP together. Your 4yo could probably be totally caught up within 3 more visits if you get them at the same time. If not it will be a little trickier. If you can find some good ways to reduce anxiety then maybe you can spread them out. I hope I'm not being overbearing... I just remember going through pretty much the same thing getting my son caught up. Just so you know, I did hesitate for long periods between visits, so I can totally understand you having worries and hesitation.
 

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We used pediarix with my now 2 year old. I was worried at first about so many in one shot, but she had absolutely no reaction to the vaccines. If it reduces the number of sticks, and he has had minimal reaction, I'd say go with the pediarix.

I don't remember if the doctor combined mmr with other shots. I remember that she didn't want to combine MMR and varicella.
 
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