On Wednesday 19 May 2021 our Year 10 students will be administered the Meningococcal ACWY vaccine.
This vaccine, which is provided free through the Health Department, protects our students against meningococcal disease which is a very serious infection that can cause severe scarring, loss of limbs, brain damage and death. The vaccination our students receive will protect them from meningococcal strains ACW and Y. If you are concerned about your child’s vaccination make sure you have let Ms Walton know as she will arrange some extra time and provisions to make sure they are feeling comfortable.
Here are some tips that your child may find helpful in preparing for their vaccination:
- Focus your mind on something else. When you are waiting in line for your needle, distract yourself by chatting to friends this may help reduce your worry.
- Know that it won’t hurt for long. Expect and accept a small amount of pain, and you will get through the vaccination much more easily. There will be a sharp pain for less than three seconds – this is a small amount of pain for a huge benefit.
- Take deep breaths. Breathe in and out, focusing on drawing the air all the way into your body and then pushing it all the way out. Count your breaths if that helps you relax and focus on your breathing. This will help calm your body down so that you will feel less nervous.
- Take precautionary measures if necessary. If you’ve fainted during or after needle vaccinations before, or if you’re worried about fainting, please make sure you tell Ms Walton or the nurse administering the needle. The nurse can lay you down or sit you in a comfortable chair while they administer the needle. Make sure they know that you’re nervous so that they can help keep you calm. You will be recovering in B07 for 15 minutes after the needle to make sure you are feeling okay from the vaccination.
- Don’t look at the area that has the needles set out. Before giving the needle, the nurse will clean the area where you’re getting the needle with an alcohol wipe which can sometimes be quite cold. Focus on the cold feeling and chat to the nurse to avoid looking at or thinking about the upcoming needle.
- Relax your muscles and don’t look. Try to avoid clenching your muscles as this can make the needle hurt a little when being administered. Look around the room, read a poster on the wall, or just look straight in front of you, but don’t look at the needle or watch the nurse administer the needle if you’re at all nervous about it. Sing your favourite song in your head or think about something that you enjoy or that makes you happy.
- Take care of yourself after the needle. Move your arm around throughout the day and drink plenty of water and eat healthily.
Ms Lisa Walton