Baby and Toddler

Your baby immunisation schedule & tips

Doctor examining baby with mother

Vaccinations are important for protecting your little one from serious illness and disease. Your baby immunisation schedule will tell you when each vaccination is due, what it protects against, and how it will be administered. We also have some tips so you will know what to expect.

About vaccinations

These are free and can be administered by your family GP or by the Doctor/General Practice Nurse at your local health centre. Both the HSE and NHS run a full vaccination programme which will help to protect your baby from such as Diphtheria, Hepatitis B, Meningitis, Polio, Tetanus and more. Starting at 2 months, your baby will require 3 vaccinations in their first year (2, 4, 6 months) then two more at 12 and 13 months, after which, your child’s school will administer another at 4/5 years.

Your baby immunisation schedule

Here is a downloadable baby immunisation schedule from the HSE of vaccinations your child needs to have. These can differ from country to country so if you are outside Ireland, please check your national health provider’s own immunization schedule.

Immunisation tips

It’s not a fun experience for parent or baby at the time, but your baby will have forgotten the pain of the injections by the time they leave the Doctor’s office/health centre. Especially if you feed or soothe them straight after. Here are some tips to help make the experience easier for all.

If your baby has a high temperature, they should not be vaccinated. Wait until their temperature has dropped back to normal before going ahead with immunization.

It doesn’t matter if your little one has a sniffle, is a little unwell, or is teething. As long as their temperature is normal, there is no reason to delay vaccination.

You can still proceed if your baby is on antibiotics. Again, as long as their temperature is normal.

Dress your little one in something that will give easy access to the arms. Put a short-sleeved vest on your baby and something over it that’s easy to take off.

Bring a feed along with you if you are bottle feeding or pumping. If not, it’s a good idea to breastfeed your little one after vaccination as it will help to soothe them.

You may be advised to give liquid infant paracetamol after the 2 & 4 month vaccinations so make sure you have some handy. Your health professional will guide you on this. Do not give paracetamol in advance.

Take your baby’s immunization passport along with you to be updated each time. Keep it in your changing bag so it’s always close to hand.

Remember not to bin your child’s immunization passport once they get older. Their primary school will need to know if they have had their MMR dose at 12 months before administering the booster which children get at 4/5 years.

After vaccination

Bear in mind that after each course of immunisation, your little one may be out of sorts. They may become feverish, fretful, and you may see redness and swelling where the vaccinations were given. Your health care provider will let you know what to expect and what to do.  But if you are worried about your baby, please contact your GP, general practice nurse or public health nurse for further advice.

If you miss your baby immunisation schedule

Note: It’s recommended that your baby receives their vaccinations at the scheduled time. However, if for any reason, these were delayed, your baby can still have them. Contact your health professional who will reschedule them for you.

Information from HSE website:

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