Being a parent, we feel that the worst thing to witness is seeing your child in immense pain. And this comes along with the vaccinations for our babies. The first vaccine was when our baby was a few days old and more than him, it pricked our hearts seeing the vaccine being injected.
But it was just the start. The real agony was felt when I saw my baby’s discomfort and cries even a few days after injection due to the side-effects of vaccines. Severe pain, swelling, fever, irritation, all of it became suffering.
Somehow, as a parent, I became more anxious about the vaccination schedule. After the initial months, when we moved back to Delhi, the type of vaccinations also changed. With the advent of advanced technologies, scientists and researchers have come up with “Less painful Vaccinations”. These vaccinations are a substitute for the conventional vaccines, and we were introduced to these vaccines by our pediatrician in Delhi.
What are Less painful Vaccines?
Less painful Vaccines are not a recent invention, but they were developed in the 1990’s and have been widely accepted in western countries. ²DTP is one of the most common vaccines given to babies in multiple doses for the protection against Diphtheria, Tetanus, and highly infectious Pertussis (whooping cough). The discussion between Painful and Less painful vaccines is basically between DTwP and DTaP vaccine respectively.
The whole-cell DTP vaccine (DTwP), was seen to have many side effects on babies including immense pain. DTwP vaccine can be now replaced with the DTaP vaccine, which is a less painful combination vaccine. ¹The only difference between these two vaccines is that the whole-cell vaccine ( DTwP) has been replaced with the acellular vaccine (DTaP: diphtheria, tetanus, and “acellular” Pertussis). This acellular form makes this vaccine less painful when injected into our babies.
DTwP vaccines are considered painful for a baby, because it often leads to pain on the injected side, causes fever, vomiting, and swelling, which adds to the discomfort for a baby. And thus DTaP vaccines, referred to as Less painful Vaccines were introduced.
Are Less painful Vaccines effective?
Over time there have been various discussions over the efficacy of DTaP and it is often said that it has faster waning of immunity against the said diseases. But there aren’t enough pieces of evidence available and DTaP is also said to prevent DPT and its severe forms. With the suggestion of our Pediatrician, we went ahead for 5 doses of this Less painful vaccine for our son. And as a parent, indeed we were happy to see our child, not in any kind of “pain”.
Parents, be aware that no vaccine can be 100% effective, and any vaccinated child can pass on the said infection. A lot depends upon a child’s immunity.
Benefits of Less painful Vaccination:
- As the name says, indeed you’ll see your child in Nil or very less pain.
- There isn’t any swelling at the site of injection.
- Usually, the chances of fever are very minimal, thus leaving your child Happy.
The only point I feel, you would need to check is the cost, Less painful vaccinations are usually double the cost of a normal vaccine. So, discuss your child’s health parameters, the vaccine cost with your pediatrician, and then decide on to opt for a painful or a less painful vaccination.
This post was to share with you all about the availability of Less painful vaccinations in India and our first-hand experience as parents opting for Less painful vaccines. They indeed acted as a breather for us and our baby.
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