We often tell children that shots will not hurt a bit, but we know the truth is that it will hurt. Vaccinations are often feared by adults and children, and the main reason why is because of the needle. What if we could reduce the risks and the pain involved with getting vaccinated? Would more people adhere to the immunization regulations more than they do with needle inoculation methods? Let’s explore the new needleless vaccination method and discuss how children will benefit from this new technology.
How does the technology work?
The basis of the new form of injection is a tiny disc that is similar to a contact lens. It is completely smooth on one side, and the other is lined with sharp micro-sized needles. The 1 mm long needles are made from a biodegradable polymer and a type of sugar that is designed to preserve the vaccination.
The vaccination is given to the individual by applying a small amount of pressure to the flat side of the disc. The micro-needles will penetrate the top layer of skin, and after five minutes they will completely dissolve. The vaccination will then be activated within the body.
How do needleless vaccinations differ from traditional injections?
Let’s start with what we know. Traditional injections are introduced into a person’s body with a hypodermic needle or a syringe. The vaccination must be administered by a trained professional to assure that it is injected into the proper area.
Disposal of the syringe or needle needs to be handled with extreme care to avoid cross contamination and the spread of blood borne illnesses. In addition, these vaccines need to be stored in a cold environment to make sure the vaccine is still effective when it enters someone’s body.
The new needleless vaccination technology is different from this in many ways. First, there is no needle or syringe required to administer the vaccine. The micro-needle vaccination can be self administered. It does not require a medical professional to complete the process.
The micro-needles dissolve into the skin of the person getting the vaccination, so there is no need to take precautions when disposing of the waste products. In addition, these vaccinations have been tested and it has been discovered that they do not require refrigeration. The vaccine will remain stable and effective at room temperature.
How will this benefit children?
Children receive a large amount of vaccinations within their first few years of life. On certain occasions, they even receive multiple injections at one visit to the doctor. When a child is terrified of injections from a hypodermic needle, parents are more likely to avoid making them feel this way. These micro-needle injections barely penetrate the skin and can almost feel like a strong steam from a water gun.
Traditional methods involve a needle going deep into the muscle of the child, which often causes pain during the injection as well as sore muscles after the fact. For a young child, seeing a large needle coming towards you is a big part of what makes getting a shot so scary. With the new needleless technology, those fears are taken away and receiving an immunization can become a much happier experience for the child and the parents.
This new technology is not only a way to have everyone comply with the vaccinations that are recommended for our safety, it is a painless way to manage autoimmune conditions as well. If the technology becomes common, it could better the lives of millions across the globe who use needles every day to deal with diabetes or severe allergies.
Mark Sadaka is a vaccine injury lawyer who represents numerous clients from around the country. Sadaka’s firm has the resources and expertise necessary to successfully handle these medically complex cases. Go to Vaccine Injury Help Center if you have vaccine injury related concerns.