Painless Vaccination - Is It Safe, Advantages & Side Effects

Painless Vaccination for Babies

If you are a parent, the mere thought of getting your baby vaccinated and hearing his cries might make you look for harmless alternatives. And there are! You can consider painless vaccination for your baby. Painless vaccinations are acellular vaccines that contain fewer antigens and are administered by a syringe. As these vaccinations don’t make a child uncomfortable, they have become popular among parents. But before you take your child on a painless route, you must understand what these vaccines are all about and whether or not they are effective.

Video: Painless Vaccination for Babies – Is It Good?

What Is Painless Vaccination?

Painless vaccination for babies is a recent invention in the field of immunology. A painless vaccine is given as a combination vaccine named DaPT (Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis and Tetanus.) This vaccine causes less or no pain and swelling when it is injected. And the DaPT vaccine, along with being painless, is as effective as the regular painful vaccines such as the DPT vaccine.

Are Painless Vaccines Really Effective?

Painless or painful – both types of vaccines are equally effective as shown by recent studies. A painless vaccine too can prevent DPT and its severe forms. It is recommended! However, one should remember that no vaccine is 100 per cent effective. Although the vaccinated child may become immune, the disease can still be passed along through him to other children who have not been vaccinated or who have weak immunity. Similarly, the child may get an infection if he has low immunity.

Are Painless Vaccines Safe?

Is painless vaccination safe for infants? Painless vaccines are safe – they prevent babies from experiencing post-vaccination side effects like fever and painful swelling.

Advantages of Painless Vaccination

Here are some advantages that have been linked to painless vaccinations:

  • Pain experienced by a child is minimal.
  • There is little to no swelling at the injection site.
  • Unlike other vaccines, there is very less chance of fever after the shot.
  • Pain experienced by a child is minimal.
  • There is little to no swelling at the injection site.
  • Unlike other vaccines, there is very less chance of fever after the shot.
  • Less severe symptoms, such as hypotonia and high temperature.
  • Oral and intranasal vaccines can be administered easily and affordably.

Side Effects of Painless Vaccine in Babies

Generally, there are no side effects of painless vaccines in babies. Painless vaccinations are not pain-free. They cause the same amount of pain when administered, but post-vaccination, there is lesser pain, and the chances of fever are also less. The only downside of this vaccination is that it is expensive. The price of painless vaccines is double the cost of painful vaccines.

Painless Vs Painful Vaccination

  • DPT (Diphtheria, Pertussis and Tetanus) is a painful form of painless vaccination. It is also known as Easy-five or Pentavac.
  • DaPT (Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis and Tetanus) is the painless version of the vaccination known as Pentaxim. 

Tetanus Vaccination

  • Pentadic (painful) protects against Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Haemophilus Influenzae Type B and Hepatitis B, while Pentaxim (painless) protects against the same diseases except for Hepatitis B.
  • The painful vaccination causes swelling in the injected area and is often accompanied by fever, whereas the painless vaccination does not have such severe after-effects.

What Are Some Limitations of Painless Vaccines?

During the pertussis outbreak in 2009 and 2010, adolescents who had been administered the DTaP vaccine during infancy were likelier to develop pertussis than those who had been given the whole-cell vaccine. So, it is likely to say that their use has some limitations. 

  • As per the Indian Academy of Pediatrics, the whole-cell vaccine is recommended for the primary immunisation of newborns. The acellular vaccine should only be employed in special cases. 
  • Acellular vaccines are extensively used in developed countries. Further research may be necessary to determine adolescents’ requirements for a booster dose and long-term immunity. Your child’s paediatrician can also inform you about any legislation in your country prohibiting painless immunisations.
  • Despite numerous comparisons between the painless and painful vaccine variants, no definitive evidence is available on the effectiveness of the DTP and DTaP vaccines.

Painless or Painful Vaccine – Which Is Better?

Painless as well as painful vaccines are equally effective. So you can choose either for your baby. But do keep in mind that the painless vaccines are expensive.

Immunization Schedule Based On the Choice of Vaccines

According to the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, one should give the painful vaccine as follows:

1. Primary Immunization: This should be given to babies at the ages of six weeks, ten weeks, and fourteen weeks.

2. Booster Shots: Booster shots should be given to a child when he turns one and a half years of age and at five years of age.

According to the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, one should give the painless vaccine as follows:

3. Primary Immunization: The IAP recommends that the painless vaccine be given only in special circumstances for the primary vaccinations. Some of the special circumstances include allergic reactions to the previous dose of the painful vaccine or when the child suffers from neurological problems.

4. Booster Shots: These can be given at the ages of one and a half years and five years.

Note: As per the new guidelines of IAP, the schedule for the painless and painful vaccines is the same.

Cost of Painless Vaccination for Babies

Administering painless vaccinations may come at a higher cost than traditional whole-cell vaccinations.Your child’s paediatrician can provide details regarding the suggested immunisation timetable, available vaccine choices, and pricing. It is important to note that vaccination costs may differ from country to country, and some individuals may be eligible for cost-free immunisations as per government regulations.

Several licenced paediatric DTaP vaccines are available in the US: Daptacel, Infanrix, Kinirix, Pediarix, Pentacel, and Quadracel. If you choose immunisation programmes supported by the CDC, such as the state health departments, these vaccines might cost anywhere from $18 to $62. Vaccinations in the private sector could cost between $31 and $100. 


1. Do Babies Sleep and Get Fever After Painless Vaccination?

No. Each infant can react differently to a fever. Some infants may not experience a fever following vaccination. Nonetheless, many parents worry if their newborns don’t get a fever because it shows that the vaccines are working. In this situation, you should be aware that the emergence of a fever is not a sign that your kid’s vaccine was effective.

2. How Long Does It Take for Babies to Recover From the Side Effects of Vaccination?

Vaccine-mild side effects often fade away on their own in two to three days.

3. Is It Okay to Delay Immunization for Infants?

To prevent kids against infections as early as possible, it is generally advised that they receive vaccinations following the recommended schedule. Delaying immunisations could make infants more susceptible to illnesses for extended periods of time, during which they might catch a sickness and develop life-threatening consequences.

As a parent, you might want to spare your child from the after-effects of the painful vaccination, but its benefits over the painless vaccine are much greater. It is all right to give your child the painless vaccine for booster shots, but painful vaccines should be given for their immunity.


1. Garg, N, Aggarwal. A; Advances Towards Painless Vaccination and Newer Modes of Vaccine Delivery; PubMed Central;; June 2017

2. Capeding. ME, Ortiz. E, Montellano. MB, et al.;  Immunogenicity and safety of a DTaP–IPV//PRP~T combination vaccine given with hepatitis B vaccine: a randomized open-label trial; PubMed Central;; June 2008

3. About Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis Vaccines; CDC;

4. CDC Vaccine Price List; CDC;

5. Kilgore. PE, Salim. AM, Zervos. MJ, et al.; Pertussis: Microbiology, Disease, Treatment, and Prevention; ASM Journal;; March 2016

Also Read:

Common Side-Effects of Vaccination in Babies
Tips To Sooth Vaccination Pain In Infants
Vaccine Myths and Facts You Should Consider
Commonly Asked Vaccination Questions with Answers

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