Immunizations: Care at home
What immunizations does my child need?
Visit Children’s Primary Care webpage on Childrensmn.org to learn about which immunizations (vaccines) your child needs and when they are given. Most immunizations are given during check-ups. Many need to be given more than once to work or be effective. If you get off schedule, ask your doctor or nurse practitioner about how to make them up.
Access your child’s immunization records through your My Children’s portal or download the Docket app that connects with Minnesota Department of Health vaccine registry.
If you are not able to access the portal or use the mobile phone app, always keep your child’s immunization record in a safe place and take it with you:
- Whenever you go to a clinic, hospital, or emergency department
- When your child enrolls in school or daycare
What are the side effects?
Your child may have redness, swelling, and soreness at the injection site. Some immunizations might also cause a slight fever and fussiness.
Oral rotavirus vaccine can cause more frequent bowel movements for a few days.
Measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine may cause a mild rash about 7-12 days after the shot and may last 1 or 2 days. This is not measles and is not contagious.
Varicella (chicken pox) vaccine may cause a few chicken pox bumps at the site of the shot, or other places on the body within a few days. If bumps appear, they are usually very mild and do not last long.
How should I treat the side effects?
If your child is fussy or has a fever, acetaminophen (Tylenol® or another brand) helps lower fever and increase comfort. Give acetaminophen every 4 hours as long as the side effects continue.
If your child is over 6 months old, you may also use Ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin® or another brand). Ibuprofen can be given every 6 hours. Do not use both Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen. If you think your child needs more than one of these medications, call your clinic. Do Not give aspirin! See handout, “Acetaminophen Ibuprofen Dosage Chart”.
In addition to medications, here are other things you can do to help with comfort during fevers:
- Give your child plenty to drink.
- Do not cover or wrap your child tightly.
- Recheck your child's temperature after 1 hour.
- Sponge your child in 1–2 inches of lukewarm water.
- If your child has redness, swelling, and soreness at the injection site, apply a clean, cool, wet washcloth over the sore area for comfort.
When should I call the clinic?
Severe reactions to immunizations are very rare and should be reported. Please call your clinic if your child experiences any of the following:
- not acting normal; unusual behavior or there is a real decrease in activity or alertness
- Limpness, pale color or unusual lightness of skin color compared to normal
- an unusually high-pitched cry
- crying for more than 3 hours; cannot be comforted
- fever higher than 103°F (39.5°C) rectally (if your child is younger than 6 months old)
- fever that does not come down with medication or lasts longer than 2 days
- the redness or tenderness increases at the injection site after 24 hours
- seizure (convulsion, twitching, shaking, or jerking) - Call 911 if this happens!
If you are worried at all about how your child looks or feels, call your clinic!
This sheet is not specific to your child but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call the clinic.
This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Minnesota Family Resource Center library, or visit www.childrensmn.org/educationmaterials.
© 2024 Children's Minnesota