How can you help your child?

How to help your infant:

  • Ask questions and stay informed. Infants rely on cures from parents on how to react (if you appear calm and confident, your child will be more relaxed.)
  • Bring a comfort item from home (blanket, special toy, stuffed animal, etc.)

How to help your toddler:

  • Toddlers do not understand the concept of time. It is best to talk with your child about surgery only one or two days beforehand.
  • Toddlers are trying to develop a sense of control. Allow them to choose a favorite toy, stuffed animal or blanket to bring to the hospital.
  • Realize that fussiness and behavior changes are common before and after procedures.
  • As questions and stay informed. The more comfortable you are, the more comfortable your child will be.Attend a surgery tour, if possible

How to help your preschooler:

  • Preschoolers are curious and want to know what to expect. Talk to your child about surgery 3-5 days in advance.
  • Use simple words and avoid unnecessary details. Also, reinforce the idea that the child did nothing wrong to cause the surgery.
  • Use a play doctor's kit, hospital book or app to help your child express his or her feelings about the surgery. (Available at the App Store or Google Play)

How to help your teen:

  • Keep your teen involved in all aspects of planning the surgery
  • Respect your teen's need for privacy and be supportive of his or her thoughts and feelings.
  • Encourage the teen to talk about any concerns, realizing that there may be some concerns your teen doesn't want to share with you.
  • Attend a surgery tour, if possible, or down our KidSpeak Medical Prep for Kids app to see a virtual tour of the surgery areas. (Available at the App Store or Google Play)

My Surgery Worksheet