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I've always held my boys during their vaccines, except for their first Hep B shots in the hospital. They were both C-section babies so I was still in surgery when they got their shots. I've tried nursing before/during shots, but both boys are easily distracted and never stayed latched, so I always nurse after wards. The nurses at our doctor's office are really fast, so there's no time for them to struggle since its pretty much over by the time they realize what happened, even when they've gotten 3 or 4 shots at one time.
On the other hand, I can distinctly remember being restrained by my mom, two nurses and the doctor when I got shots as a kid (some where between the ages of 2 and 4). I was a biter, lol.
I hold my kids especially now that they are older and my son is a kicker. They do ok I talk to them and reassure them so I am not holding them down as much as comforting them. It is really fast for us too.
I can't recall if I held Connor last time. I do remember preparing him by being honest and telling him that he was going to feel a pinch and it would hurt a little bit but it would be over before he knew it and he'd get a treat afterward. I think he shed all of two tears and then he was fine. He's a pretty tough kid.