26 April 2022

Getting your baby's first vaccines: Mini Parenting Master Class

Getting your child's first vaccines can cause a lot of anxiety for many parents, but there are ways to make it less stressful for both you and your baby. We spoke to paediatric nurse and mother, Dr. Shannon MacDonald, on the importance of vaccines for children and to get answers to parents' most common questions.  , Transcript of 'Getting your baby's first vaccines: Mini Parenting Master Class' video, As a parent myself, I know that going to get your child vaccinated can cause a lot of anxiety. You don’t want to do anything to hurt your child and the idea of them getting a needle can cause a lot of concern for parents. So, it’s important to remember there’re lots of strategies you can use. My name is Shannon MacDonald and this is my Mini…, How can you help your baby relax during the vaccination process?, As a nurse I’ve seen many parents who are so anxious about the event themselves that there’s no way the child is ever going to be relaxed about it. So, just having the parent take some deep breaths and speak in a calm voice is the biggest part of the battle, really. The most important thing is for the parents themselves to be calm, because if the…, Why should parents feel confident about vaccinating their babies?, I understand that parents hear lots of scary things about vaccines. I know they see things on the internet, they hear scary stories from friends. I just want to reassure them that the evidence that we have overwhelmingly shows that vaccines are safe and effective, and they are by far the best way to protect children from disease. And so parents…, How do vaccines work?, What vaccines do is they prepare your immune system for when they face germs in the future. So, the idea is you give your body a really weakened form of the germ and your immune system builds a memory to that germ. By giving the child the vaccine and building their immune system then when they encounter that germ in the future, their body is all…, Why is it important for babies to get their vaccines early on?, It’s critical that children get vaccines really young, because that’s when they’re most vulnerable to the diseases. If you provide the vaccine early on, the child’s immune system is ready and then when they encounter those diseases, they’re able to fight. If the child is unprotected at an early age, they’re more likely to get the disease, but…, Are vaccines safe?, Vaccines that are introduced into our routine childhood immunization schedules have all been very rigorously tested and there are processes in place to monitor that safety after the vaccine is introduced to the population as well. The ingredients that go into making up a vaccine are all carefully tested to make sure that they’re safe for children…, What are the most common side effects that parents can expect?, The types of side effects that a child experiences from a vaccine are usually very minor, not enough to keep them home from school even. They’re things like a slight fever or redness or soreness around the injection site. And those are things that you can just manage at home. Those sorts of mild side effects resolve within 12 to 24 hours and they…, Why is it important to stick to the vaccine schedule?, It’s important to stick to the vaccine schedule because those schedules have been developed by scientists and experts who have looked at the best timing to receive a vaccine and what diseases a child is vulnerable to. In certain countries, for instance, some diseases are more common and so a child will receive those vaccines earlier in their life…, Did you find this content useful?, Loading...
10 January 2022

Navigating pregnancy during the COVID-19 pandemic

Pregnancy is a special time full of excitement and anticipation. But for many people, the COVID-19 pandemic has clouded this time with fear, anxiety and uncertainty. Here is the latest information on pregnancy, COVID-19 and vaccines, as well as expert tips on how to have a safe pregnancy during the pandemic., Jump to:, Understanding my risk How to protect myself Getting the COVID-19 vaccine while pregnant Getting the COVID-19 vaccine while breastfeeding COVID-19 vaccines and fertility If I have COVID-19 will I pass it to my baby? Is it safe to continue prenatal check-ups? Giving birth in hospital Can my partner or family member be nearby when I give birth?…, I'm pregnant. Am I at higher risk from COVID-19?, Pregnant women do not seem to be at higher risk of contracting COVID-19. However, you are at higher risk of serious illness if you get COVID-19 while pregnant. You are also at higher risk of delivering your baby prematurely if you get COVID-19. That’s why it’s important you – and people around you – take precautions to protect against COVID-19.…, What should I do to protect myself from COVID-19 while pregnant?, Pregnant women should take the same precautions to avoid COVID-19 infection as other people. To help protect yourself and people around you: Consider vaccination in consultation with your healthcare provider. Wear a mask where physical distancing from others is not possible. Keep a physical distance from others and avoid poorly ventilated or…, Can I get the COVID-19 vaccine if I’m pregnant?, Yes, you can get vaccinated if you are pregnant. Although the overall risk of severe illness from COVID-19 remains low, pregnancy puts you at higher risk of severe illness compared to people who are not pregnant. While there is less data available on vaccination of pregnant people, evidence on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines during pregnancy has…, Should I get the COVID-19 vaccine if I’m breastfeeding?, Yes, if you are breastfeeding you should take the vaccine as soon as it is available to you. It is very safe and there is no risk to the mother or baby. None of the current COVID-19 vaccines have live virus in them, so there is no risk of you transmitting COVID-19 to your baby through your breastmilk from the vaccine. In fact, the antibodies that…, I plan to have a child. Can COVID-19 vaccines affect fertility?, No, you may have seen false claims on social media, but there is no evidence that any vaccine, including COVID-19 vaccines, can affect fertility in women or men. You should get vaccinated if you are currently trying to become pregnant., If I have COVID-19 will I pass it to my baby?, We still do not know if the virus can be transmitted from a mother to her unborn or newborn baby. To date, active COVID-19 (virus that causes infection) has not been found in fluid in the womb or breastmilk. The best thing you can do is to take all necessary precautions to prevent yourself from contracting COVID-19. If you’re pregnant or have just…, Is it safe to continue prenatal check-ups?, Many expectant mothers are fearful of going to appointments while they are taking precautions, such as staying home and practicing physical distancing when outside. Find out what options are available to you from your healthcare provider. After your child is born, it is also important to continue receiving professional support and guidance,…, I was planning on giving birth in a hospital or healthcare clinic. Is this still a good option?, The risk involved depends on where you live. For the safest option for you, it is important to speak to the healthcare professional who is supporting you through your pregnancy and birth. They will be able to advise you on the risks and the safest option depending on your personal situation and local health care system., Can my partner or family member be nearby when I give birth?, While policies vary by country, you should have someone nearby to support you, as long as the proper precautions are taken, such as wearing a mask while in the delivery room and washing hands. As Franka Cadée, President of the International Confederation of Midwives, told us: “I can understand that you want to reduce the number of people with a…, I’m feeling incredibly anxious about giving birth. What should I do to cope?, The COVID-19 pandemic has been a stressful and uncertain time for everyone, and especially for those about to give birth. Having a plan in place for your birth can help ease feelings of anxiety by giving you more of a sense of control, but also recognize that some aspects may need to change depending on the situation where you live. Your plan…, What questions should I be asking my healthcare provider?, It is important to establish a trusting relationship with your healthcare provider. “All of those questions that have to do with you and your health, I would ask them freely,” says Franka Cadée, President of the International Confederation of Midwives. “If you have an open relationship with your healthcare provider – with your midwife, with your…, I have COVID-19. What should I expect during pregnancy or childbirth?, If you have or suspect you may have COVID-19, it is important to seek medical care early and follow instructions from your health care provider. Remember that you and your child have the right to high quality care throughout your pregnancy and after childbirth. You should be supported to: Breastfeed safely (see breastfeeding tips during COVID-19)…, I have COVID-19. Can I safely breastfeed my baby?, Yes. Transmission of active COVID-19 (virus that can cause infection) through breast milk and breastfeeding has not been detected to date, so there is no reason to stop or avoid breastfeeding. If you have or suspect you may have the COVID-19 virus, it is important to seek medical care early and follow instructions from your health care provider.…, Once I have given birth, what can I do to protect my newborn from the COVID-19 virus?, The level of risk involved depends on where you live. As a starting point, check for any relevance guidance from your local authorities. You should take more precautions in areas with higher rates of COVID-19 transmission and lower levels of vaccinations. If the risk is higher where you live, then consider sticking to just your family and not…
25 October 2021

Routine vaccinations during COVID-19: What parents need to know

The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has brought with it fear and uncertainty. Many parents are asking about when there will be a COVID-19 vaccine and what to do about routine childhood vaccinations during the pandemic. We're here to provide answers to your most common questions.  , When will the vaccine for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) be available?, Developing a safe and effective vaccine takes time, but thanks to the unprecedented investment in research and development and global cooperation, scientists have been able to develop a vaccine against COVID-19 in record time, while still maintaining robust, evidence-based and rigorous regulatory standards. On 31 December 2020, WHO listed the…, Should my child still get routine vaccines during the COVID-19 pandemic?, While COVID-19 is disrupting our daily lives, the short answer is yes, do try to get your child vaccinated where services are available. It is important that children and babies keep their vaccinations up to date because they protect them from serious diseases. It means that when your children can return to interacting with other children, they’ll…, What do you think we can learn from this outbreak? What can it teach us about other diseases and the decision to vaccinate?, This outbreak reminds us of how valuable vaccines are. It shows us that when there is a vaccine available for a disease, we should keep our children and ourselves up to date with that vaccination.  Without the protection of vaccines, diseases can spread quickly and with terrible consequences. For example, measles and other diseases remain a…, How do vaccines work?, Vaccines help train our immune system to fight infections by introducing an inactivated form of a germ (bacteria or virus) into the body. Since it is inactivated, it cannot make us sick. However, it triggers our body’s immune system to produce defences called antibodies. Then, if you ever catch the germ, your body’s immune system will already know…, Where can I find the latest guidance on vaccinations?, Contact your health care provider, consult your local and national health authority websites and follow guidance provided by  WHO  and  UNICEF .  , How can I protect myself and others from COVID-19?, Some of the precautions you and your family can take to help avoid infection include: Washing your hands frequently using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth. If you sneeze or cough, cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or a tissue. Dispose of used tissue immediately. Avoid…, I have a newborn to 1-year-old. How can I protect my baby from COVID-19?, In addition to all of the advice already given to parents about hand washing, physical distancing and maintaining hygiene practices, they should take extra care to protect infants from infection. Breastfeed your baby if possible. There is currently no proven research that breastmilk can transmit the virus, but you should take the usual hygiene and…, What should I do if my child is showing symptoms of COVID-19? Is it safe to take her to the doctor?, If your child has a sore throat, a cough or a fever, call your doctor or health service for advice before bringing them in. They may have a special arrangement at the clinic to minimise spread of infection to others. If your child has more serious symptoms, like shortness of breath or seems unusually sick, call the emergency number or take them to…, Should I get my child tested for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)?, You don’t need to have your child tested if he or she is healthy and not showing any symptoms (such as fever, cough or difficulty breathing). Do also make sure to take all key steps to protect your family against COVID-19. >>  Learn more about v accines This article was originally published on 23 April 2020. It was last updated on 14 January…