19815 Bay Branch Rd
Andalusia, Alabama 36420
(334) 222-2523
HELPLINE: 1-877-530-0002



SCAMHC is an approved Mental Health site for the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment program.  Find out the program details and see if you qualify by visiting: http://nhsc.hrsa.gov/

SCAMHC is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer and maintains a Drug-Free Workplace





powered by centersite dot net
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
Can Games and Apps Help Your Kids Learn?Teaching Kids the Importance of an ApologyThe 1-Parent Family and Kids' Health RisksHow to Stay Close as a Couple Now That Baby Is HereSingle Moms Often Put Kids' Health Care First, Study FindsTaking a Bite Out of Food Ads Targeted to KidsHead Off the Blues When Your Teen Heads to CollegeHealth Tip: Becoming a Step ParentHealth Tip: Talk to Your Kids Early About Alcohol UseThe Reality of Watching Reality TVAlmost All U.S. Teens Falling Short on Sleep, ExerciseMovie Violence Doesn't Make Kids Violent, Study FindsGay Dads and Their Kids Still Face Social ShamingParents, Think Before You Drink This HolidayWhen You Go From a Family of 3 to a Family of 4Navigating New Parent NervesPediatricians Renew Call to Abandon SpankingTry Small 'Bites' to Get Kids to ExerciseHealth Tip: Connect With Your ChildHealth Tip: Manage the Terrible 3'sHow to Prevent Your Child From Getting Bullied -- or Being a BullyYoung Adults Favor Family Over Friends If Forced to ChooseTo Combat Childhood Obesity, Start at Birth … or Even BeforeLongest Study Yet Finds Adult Kids of Lesbian Moms Are Doing FineParent's Tough Childhood Can Cast Shadow Across GenerationsKids of Gay Parents Don't Struggle More SociallyTo Fight Childhood Obesity, Moms to the RescueMany Parents Say Sports Can Be Too Dangerous for KidsParents Must Ask: 'Is There an Unlocked Gun in Your House?'Smartphone-Obsessed Parents May Mean Cranky KidsHow 'Helicopter' Parenting Impedes a Child's DevelopmentWhen Kids Expect a Needle to Hurt, It DoesHealth Tip: How Working Parents Can Avoid BurnoutHealth Tip: Plan Your Child's ChoresHealth Tip: If Your Child Becomes Too AggressiveHealth Tip: Keep Communicating With Your ChildHealth Tip: Rules for the PoolParents Ill-Informed About Kids' Concussion RisksHealth Tip: When Kids Have Separation AnxietyHealth Tip: Why People Get Ear InfectionsHealth Tip: Buy a Bike That Suits Your ChildClear Rules, Physical Activity Cut Children's Screen TimeVaccination Ends Disparities in Pneumococcal DiseasePreventive Intervention for Premature Infants EffectiveStricter Rules Can Steer Kids Away From TVHarmless Brain Abnormalities in Kids Pose Disclosure Dilemmas
Questions and AnswersVideosLinksBook ReviewsSelf-Help Groups
Related Topics

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Family & Relationship Issues
Internet Addiction and Media Issues

When Kids Expect a Needle to Hurt, It Does

HealthDay News
by -- Steven Reinberg
Updated: May 30th 2018

new article illustration

WEDNESDAY, May 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- When it comes to kids and medical procedures like needles, expectation is everything.

If they think the shot will hurt, it probably will, a new study finds. On the flip side, if they are coaxed not to expect a lot of pain, they may feel it less.

"We know that expectation affects pain experience in adults; we do not know whether this is also true for children," said study author Kalina Michalska, a psychologist at the University of California, Riverside.

In real-life terms, distracting children beforehand has value, the researchers said. For example, telling them, "This is going to feel like a branch scraping against your skin" may be less frightening than saying, "This is going to hurt."

The study involved 48 children (27 of whom had an anxiety disorder) and 25 adults. The team applied heat to the participants and asked them to rate levels of pain as low, medium or high. High was about the temperature of very warm tap water.

The experiment, however, used only one temperature, the one rated as medium. The difference was the cues participants heard before the heat was applied. One tone meant low heat, the other high.

Surprisingly, all three groups had a similar relationship between pain expectation and feeling -- for example, if they heard cues for high pain, they reported it, even though the actual pain level was only medium. The research group had expected the strongest reaction among the anxious children, followed by healthy children, then adults.

"We took great care to reassure children and make them feel comfortable. There were always two experimenters in the room with them and a nurse who saw them before and after to ensure they were OK," Michalska said in a university news release. "We did not take as great a precaution with adults."

Despite this reassurance, the study showed that pain expectation significantly affects pain experience, she said.

"What we learn is that both healthy and anxious childrens experience of pain is influenced by what they are told about it. If we tell them they will experience a lot of pain -- or they tell themselves this -- they will actually experience more pain and greater negative emotions as a consequence," Michalska said.

The report was published online May 30 in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine.

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends ways to make vaccines less painful.