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Painless vaccinations for babies are acellular vaccines that contain fewer antigens and are administered by syringe. As these vaccinations keep the child more comfortable due to there being less pain, they have become a more popular choice.
What Is Painless Vaccination?
Painless vaccination for babies‘ immunity is a more recent invention in its field. It is a combination vaccine by the name DaPT (Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis and Tetanus.) This vaccine produces very little or no pain and swelling at the injection site. The preparation does not use a few immunity-stimulating components, making DaPT vaccine painless but less immunogenic in nature as compared to the DPT (painful) vaccine.
Is Painless Vaccine Really Effective?
Painless vaccines fail to prevent the spread of Pertussis as it does not prevent the disease from entering and living inside a vaccinated child’s airways. While vaccinated children may become immune, the disease can still be passed along through them to other children who have not been vaccinated or who have weak immunity.
Is Painless Vaccine Safe?
While the painless vaccine is useful in that it prevents babies from going through the post-vaccination side effects like fever and painful swelling on the site of the injection, the fact that the vaccination does not provide very effective immunity and that vaccinated children still serve as transmitters of Pertussis makes it less safe than the painful vaccine.
Advantages Of Painless Vaccination
Here are some advantages that have been linked to the painless vaccinations:
- Pain experienced by the child is minimal
- There is little or no swelling at the injection site
- Unlike other vaccines, there is very little chance of fever after the shot
Side Effects Of Painless Vaccine In Babies
Some side-effects of painless vaccines in babies include:
- Not always effective due to the lower amount of immunity-stimulating components in the formulation of the vaccination.
- In order to produce the same effect as the painful vaccines, children will need to be given more shots as the dosage of one shot is less.
- The effect of painless vaccinations does not stay in the body for very long.
- The price of the painless vaccines is double the cost of the painful one.
- Painless vaccinations are not actually pain-free. They cause the same amount of pain when given, the only difference being the post-vaccination effect being less severe.
Painless Verses Painful Vaccine
- DPT (Diphtheria, Pertussis and Tetanus) is the more painful version of the vaccination. It is also known as Easy-five or Pentavac.
- DaPT (Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis and Tetanus) is the painless version of the vaccination and is also known as Pentaxim.
- Pentadic (painful) protects against Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Haemophilus Influenzae Type B and Hepatitis B, while Pentaxim (painless) covers the same except for Hepatitis B. It offers the Injectable Polio Vaccine in its stead.
- 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.
- The painful vaccination stays in the body for a longer period of time compared to the painless version.
Which One Is Better- Painless Or Painful Vaccine?
The advantages that the painful vaccine has over the painless one is far greater. It is better for your child to suffer from the after-effects of the painful vaccine and have better immunity than to simply look at the short-term effect of the painless vaccination. Paediatricians advise parents to opt for the more painful whole-cell vaccine to guarantee better immunity against Pertussis.
Immunization Schedule Based On Choice of Vaccine
According to the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, one should give the painful vaccine as follows:
Primary Immunization: Should be given at the ages of six weeks, ten weeks and fourteen weeks.
Booster Shots: Shots should be given at one and a half and five years of age.
According to the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, one should give the painless vaccine as follows:
Primary Immunization: The IAP recommends that the painless vaccine is 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 if the child suffers from neurological problems.
Booster Shots: Can be given for the booster shots at the ages of one and a half and five years.
While it is tempting for parents to want to spare their children the after-effects of the painful vaccination, its benefits over the painless vaccine are much greater. According to Paediatricians, it is all right to give your child the painless vaccine for the booster shots, but for their primary immunity, the painful but more effective vaccine should be given.
Also Read: Tips To Sooth Vaccination Pain In Infants