Practical tips to help you and your child
If your child is going to have surgery, it’s a good idea to explain to them, repeatedly and in detail, what to expect when they go to hospital.
Things they might want to know include:
- Doctors and nurses in the operating room fix up lots and lots of kids all the time. That’s their job that they do all day.
- The doctors and nurses all wear funny clothes like pyjamas and funny hats on their heads
- The doctors and nurses love to ask lots of questions…everyone wants to ask mum what they are there to get fixed and what their kid’s name is, lots of times.
- When you have surgery the sleep doc, who is called an anaesthetist, puts you to sleep with a special medicine. Sometimes you get to breathe on a special spaceman mask, same as an astronaut. If only mum and dad had one of those to get you to go to sleep every night!
- The sleep doc keeps you asleep until you are all fixed, and then they give you more medicine to wake you up. Also useful for parents of teenagers.
- When you wake up and you’re all fixed up, you won’t remember where you are…older kids will know this feeling when they wake up in grandmas house/ on a sleepover and they can’t recognise where they are for a few seconds until they remember they did not go to bed in their own bed the night before.
Kids don’t naturally harbour a fear of hospitals – they learn it from their parents.
Kids get upset about surgery, because their parents get upset…they don’t know to know that surgery and hospital should be a scary or stressful experience apart from learning that from others…calm parents have calm(er) kids.
This opinion piece was brought to you by Dr Mark Baldwin.
For more information or to answer any questions please feel free to call 03 85602999 or email firstname.lastname@example.org