Is it normal if a baby is sleepy after vaccination? And should I let her sleep or not?
Here’s what research says and what to do as a parent.
My 4-month-old baby is sleepy after vaccination shots this morning. Is it okay for her to sleep all day? If I do that, will she sleep tonight?? Should I try and wake her up every few hours?
Baby is Sleepy After Vaccination
Is it Normal if My Baby is Sleepy After a Vaccination Shot?
Many babies become very tired after getting their shots, and they need to sleep. The fact that they are sleepy is actually a good sign that their immune system is working and starting to respond to the vaccination.
According to research, babies tend to sleep between 30-100 minutes extra during the 24 hours after a vaccination shot. Around 1 hour extra was the average.
Being sleepy is just one of many common side effects of vaccination, and you can read about more side effects here.
What to do as a Parent?
I can’t say I have any supporting research on babies (more than my kids) to say this, but let her sleep. However, research on adults (referenced below) actually backs up that sleep is important after vaccination for the immune response. Whether this means that the best thing you can do is to let your baby sleep after the vaccination shots, is of course, NOT something to conclude!
If you’re lucky, she’ll have a really good night’s sleep too. I remember with my daughter, I used to joke with her doctor that I wanted my baby to have shots at least once per week – that was the only time she slept well at night. ;-)
Our youngest wasn’t at all as affected. It is very individual.
Maybe she will wake up at night if she does sleep a lot today, but it’s just one night… Waking her up now during the day is likely to mean that you have a very cranky, awake baby. I’d let her have her rest.
Let me know how things went!
More On Babies And Vaccination
- Infant Sleep After Immunization: Randomized Controlled Trial of Prophylactic Acetaminophen
- Sleep enhances the human antibody response to hepatitis A vaccination
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