Tips for injections:

WORD Day 2020 #ThursdayWordDay

For last week's #ThursdayWORDDay the question was "How can caregivers and parents ease the pain of injections for children receiving treatment?"

Once again it was a poignant one which resonated with many people. Let's face it, it's not a pleasant experience having an injection whether you're a child or adult so we're all keen to do anything we can to ease the pain a little.

Lots of you got involved on social media telling us some brilliant suggestions. By sharing ideas we may be able to find out some new tips on helping our children. One caveat though, these are not medical suggestions - these are peer to peer ideas from parents and caregivers, so if you have any concerns at all, please do check with your own medical team.

Tips and ideas from parents and caregivers on how to ease the pain of injections:

  • Distraction techniques - using a book or iPad whilst the injection is being done.
  • Ask for help when needed by asking your GP practice nurse or Community nurse to give the injection for a few weeks - sometimes taking a break from parents/caregivers doing the injection can help.
  • Use a cool pack on the area before the injection - some children find the use of a cool pack helps to numb the pain a little. Some may find a cooling/vibrating device like a "Buzzy" helpful. They can be pricey to buy so it may be worth asking others to borrow one to try first.
  • A warm bath beforehand can help to soften skin.
  • Breathing and mindfulness techniques to help stay as relaxed as possible.
  • Try not to show emotion as the caregiver/parent as children can pick up on your anxiety.
  • A rewards box of small pocket money toys and treats can prove to be a useful distraction and reward.
  • Stickers as a reward can work well - like our fabulous Kipo's heroes stickers.
  • Giving children an element of control - so they need to have the injection but perhaps they could choose which leg to have it in that week or which day of the weekend.
  • Keeping to a routine can help some children as that can ease any worrying beforehand.
  • Having a choice of character plasters to choose.
  • Talking to your child at other times about the importance of all their treatment, such as the importance of physiotherapy and having their medication, can help them understand how essential it is to helping them feel better.

In case you haven't heard WORD Day 2020 is happening on 18th March 2020. WORD Day stands for World yOung Rheumatic Diseases Day, of which JIA is one.

The aim of WORD Day is to spread the word that young people get rheumatic diseases too, with the goal of encouraging early diagnosis of rheumatic diseases which can make a big difference to long term outcomes for children.

You can find out more on the WORD Day 2020 website here.

Images used in this article are courtesy of WORD Day.