14 Dec How to Prepare Your Child for Surgery
It can be any parent’s worst nightmare when their child has a serious medical issue that requires some type of surgery. If your child is having an elective surgery (not a last-minute life-threatening procedure) then you will have some time to prepare your child ahead of time. This can be difficult, no matter what type of surgery they need—but there are several things you can do as a parent to help make sure your child is ready for what lies ahead.
Start By Preparing Yourself
In addition to preparing your child for surgery, you need to make sure that you are fully prepared for your child to undergo this type of procedure. When you are prepared and feel less anxious about your child going under anesthesia—they will feel less anxious. Your energy surrounding this procedure is important.
Kids can cope better if they have an understanding of what is going on—so it is best to make sure that you help your child understand why the surgery is needed and why it is important. If you prepare yourself to stay calm, cool and collected before the surgery ever takes place—it will only help your little one moving forward.
Make Sure to Ask Questions
If you have any questions about your child’s surgery, the recovery, the preparation process or hospital policies—make sure that you ask. The more informed you (and your child) are, the better off the procedure will go. Whether it is a question about visiting hours, or how long they should wait to eat—the more questions you ask the better off everyone will be.
Explain What is Going on to Your Child
If you child is old enough to understand—it is important to explain to them exactly what is going on, so that they have a better idea of why they need the surgery. A lot of kids always like to know the “why” of their questions.
Make sure to explain to your child’s level of understanding, but don’t use alarming words like “opening you up” or “sewing you with a needle.” That will only frighten your child more.
Start Addressing Fears
Be prepared for your child to have fears and questions about their surgery, and you need to be ready to start addressing those fears and answering questions. Help explain to them that a very nice doctor will come in and give them a special medicine that will make them go to sleep so they don’t feel anything. Don’t say they will be “given gas” or “put to sleep,” it gets confusing for children.
Make sure to be ready with a comforting smile or favorite toy when your child wakes up after surgery to help them feel more at ease so these fears don’t continue after their operation.
While no parent ever wants their child to have to go in for surgery—it is important to be prepared in case this situation ever arises. If you are concerned about preparing your child for a situation like this—then contact Continuum Pediatrics for an appointment today. You can call our office directly at 817-617-8600 to schedule an appointment and to make sure you are ready to prepare your child for something like a surgery.