We want to make sure that you are safe and comfortable during your surgery, so we use a special medicine to help you sleep the entire time your surgery is happening. This sleep is different than night time sleep because we use a medicine to make it happen. You don’t even have to be tired! The medicine will keep you asleep until we are finished with your surgery. When we are done, we’ll stop giving you the medicine and you will wake up. The medicine also prevents your body from feeling anything that hurts during your surgery! You won’t see anything, hear anything or feel anything as long as we give you the medicine.
There are two ways for kids to go to sleep for their surgery. The first is through a soft, plastic mask. The mask goes over your nose and mouth. As you breathe, the medicine enters your body and you fall asleep. You can choose a smell for your mask – bubble gum, watermelon, cherry or strawberry. Usually, kids who are under 10 can use the mask to go to sleep.
The second way for kids to fall asleep is through an IV, or an intravenous line. An IV is a small, plastic straw that goes inside a vein (one of those blue lines) on your hand or your arm. We do use a tiny needle to start the IV, but once the straw is in place, the needle is taken out and just the bendy straw is left. We use the tiny straw to put medicine and fluids into your body. Usually, kids who are over 10 use the IV to go to sleep.