Ways to Prepare Your Child for Surgery

unduhan-29Conversing with your youngster about his approaching surgery and clarifying what lies ahead will help him and you bargain better with the circumstance. It can make the entire methodology less distressing.

If your child needs surgery and you have opted for elective surgery, then you have time on your hands to explain to your child all about the procedure. It’s advisable to talk to them about the hospital procedures and the surgery, it will make you less anxious. Explain in kid-friendly terms why he has to undergo the surgery. It’s human nature to fear the unknown. So if they know what is going to happen and why it is going to happen, they will be less scared. So to put their fears to rest, you as a parent should educate yourself about the surgery, so that you are in a better position to answer your child. To do that, schedule a visit with the doctor and ask all questions pertaining to the procedure and if there are any risks associated with the surgery. Find out if the hospital rules allow parents to be present in the operating room when the surgery is being carried out, and whether you can stay back for the night if the child is not discharged the same day. Once you gather all the right information, help your child understand all the unknown facts.

Preparing Your Child for Surgery

Dealing with Infants
Even though they can’t yet talk, infants are very sensitive to their surroundings and can easily get disturbed by the hospital environment. They are acutely sensitive to the pitch of their caregivers’ voice and their mannerisms. So if you are tensed, your infant will feel the stress too. Lower your anxiety levels, remain calm and composed, and stick to a routine to help your infant cope better with the surgery. Carry their security blanket if they are used to one, whether it’s the pacifier, a favorite blanket, or a stuffed toy. As compared to older kids, infants will need extra comforting. Sometimes, surgery is carried out on an empty stomach, so if your child has to go with little or no food for a day, it is going to make him very cranky. They may even demand to be held more often than usual. Hold your baby close and offer all the comfort you can.

Dealing with Toddlers and Preschoolers
An age when children can’t yet fully communicate their wants, but still want to be independent. You might want to ask your pediatrician to have a friendly talk with your little one about the hospital visit. One of the best things you can do to allay their fears is to buy a doctor set and play with them. Kids this age love role-play, and this will prove the ideal setting for you to explain what might happen on the day of surgery. Take turns playing the doctor and then the patient so your child gets a better understanding of the scenario. You could even use his stuffed toy as the patient with your kid enacting the role of the doctor to better explain what a surgical procedure seems like. Always use child-friendly language. It might be a good idea to take your kid for a tour of the hospital facility, and familiarize him with the settings. On the day of surgery, bring along their favorite toy, books and DVDs.

Dealing with School-aged Children
Children of this age are much more mature and a lot more curious than toddlers and preschoolers, so expect to be bombarded with numerous questions about the surgery. Explain why he or she needs to undergo the procedure. Kids can sometimes be fraught with guilt and feel that surgery is a way they are being reprimanded for behaving badly. Explain that this is not true, and the surgery is being carried out simply to fix a problem. Take them on a hospital tour, where they can see and understand for themselves where they would be during the surgery. Explain terms like anesthesia, surgeon, operating room, operation, and the fact that they will meet many nurses and doctors at the hospital. Inform them what all steps are followed before the actual surgery takes place (they might not be allowed to have food, they will have to change into a hospital gown, the nurse will take initial readings like temperature and weight, etc.). Talk about the fact that once it’s all over, they may see some body part (where the surgery took place) covered in bandages, and it is nothing to be scared of, and it will be taken off in no time once they recover. Emphasize that they will feel better very soon. Offer a lot of hugs; it provides children the physical reassurance to feel safe and secure.

School-going children may have seen surgery or a hospital setting on TV, and may have a wrong idea about the whole thing. Clearly state that whatever they saw on TV is not the real thing. Never ever tell them they are big kids now and should not cry. This can have an undesirable effect. They might just keep their fears to themselves, for fear of being ridiculed. For them, a surgical procedure can be terrifying. So encourage them gently to voice any concerns they may have and discuss and soothe their fears. Tell them it’s perfectly normal to feel scared and even angry, and there’s nothing wrong if they want to cry. In fact, crying will help your child by providing an outlet for all the bottled up feelings he harbors about the hospital and surgery.

Watch how you phrase your words. Phrases like “anesthesia will put you to sleep” should be strictly avoided. Children generally associate “put to sleep” with animals, especially when animals are euthanized. The phrase might actually scare them if they think they too will never wake up from surgery. Also carefully explain that there might be a bit of pain after the surgery has been completed, and that doctors will give medicines to get rid of it.

Helping Children After the Procedure
Children, especially infants and toddlers, can be excessively irritable after the surgery and difficult to console. Handling them might be tougher, especially if they can’t be picked up and held yet. The fussiness could be because they are hungry, in considerable pain, or side effects of the anesthesia haven’t yet completely faded which can make them feel groggy. If you are alone, take help from friends and family, especially if you have other kids to look after. Once the child enters the recuperative stage, follow all the instructions prescribed by the doctor. Give the prescribed medication on time, without fail. Older children might like a visit from other family members and friends, so ask your loved ones to pay them a visit. Visiting friends and family can be a welcome distraction from pain. Decorate your child’s room with balloons, so when he wakes up, he will be pleased and remain cheerful.

A child undergoing surgery is not a pleasant scenario, and something no family should ever have to go through. Remember that as the parent, your child will look up to you for comfort and support. So it’s essential that you do not neglect yourself and take good care in the days leading up to the surgery, and accept any help that comes your way, without hesitation. This will help you as a family cope with the stress of the imminent surgery in a better way. Children will pick on the tone of your voice and your emotions, so stay composed, however anxious you are. Abide by the doctor’s guidelines about any special aftercare procedures, so your child will recuperate faster.

Preventive Measures for Shaken Baby Syndrome

Shaken child disorder or SBS is the significant reason for early newborn child passings and is a criminal offense. Here is a nitty gritty article to recognize a SBS case and anticipate it instantly.

As alert citizens, we come across several cases of early infant deaths. The cause is most often stated as sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). On a closer look, we realize that there could be more to this unusual death than SIDS. Shaken baby syndrome is a critical form of child abuse where the child suffers because of parental frustrations. Often children cry endlessly and without any control. A parent, a nanny or a caregiver may become extremely angry and frustrated during such situations and may end up shaking the baby really violently so as to bring the child under control. This results into SBS, which has a high mortality rate if the problem is neglected.

How Serious is Shaken Baby Syndrome Problem?
The approximate number of SBS is still unknown. Cases of SBS often go unnoticed, however it accounts for approximately 10% of early child death cases. Children with an age as less as 3 months have been victims of this problem. In some rare cases, the problem may persist till early adolescence. There are some cases of SBS reported in newborn babies as well. As stated earlier, SBS involves violent shaking of the child. Some common effects of this could be spinal cord injuries, retinal hemorrhages, permanent brain injury and early death. Approximately 25% of SBS cases end up in child death, due to lack of proper medication.

Understanding and Preventing Shaken Baby Syndrome
It is important to first understand what triggers shaken baby syndrome to help prevent it. Shaken baby syndrome is commonly seen in children who have physical deformities, learning disabilities, in adopted or foster care children, etc. If the parental frustration is not on account of any of these problems, then the problem might be triggered on account of factors such as insufficient parental education, parents with psychic problems, single parenting, early pregnancy or parents with substance abuse problems. It is often seen that, parents have themselves been abused in some way in their early childhood. If not intentionally, then the problem can be out of accidental brain injury on account of neglecting the child. Some other known factors include incorrect way of carrying babies viz. in back packs or kangaroo bags.

As alert citizens, it is our moral duty to inform a child abuse hot-line service immediately if we happen to know about a case of shaken baby syndrome and child abuse in our neighborhood. The abusive parents are likely to face legal action as it has been quoted as a criminal offense under Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention Act.

If you as a parent are prone to lose control on your anger, then follow the following steps:

  • It is best to avoid disciplining your child whenever you are angry. Similarly, avoid being close to your child when you are angry or when you are arguing with an adult.
  • Never shake your child violently.
  • If you happen to experience bouts of anger and frustration, then take help in child caring from a responsible caregiver from your family till you control your anger.
  • Visit a counselor and opt to join an anger management program.

What Happens When a Child is Shaken?
It is fact that an infant’s brain is much smaller than the actual size of the skull. This is because the brain is still developing in the infancy age and grows larger as time moves on. A sudden and violent shaking can often result in shifting of the brain within the skull compartment causing tearing of blood vessels and severe damage to nervous tissues. This may cause internal bleeding in the brain and the eyes. As the problem advances, more complicated problems on account of damaged nervous system crop up. Often the damage to the brain becomes permanent viz cerebral palsy or blindness. At the same time, an infant’s muscle and bone tissues require time to develop. If the child is neglected or physically abused, there are cases of weakening of muscles, rib fractures and greenstick fractures. At times, there may be some bruising on skin surface. Some of the telltale signs and symptoms to identify an SBS case may include, breathing problems, general lethargy, vomiting and nausea, irritability, brain selling, seizures, poor appetite, pale skin, unconsciousness, unpredictable behavior patterns, gloomy mood of the child, cerebral contusions, shearing of blood vessels, subdural and subarachnoid hemorrhages, neck and spinal injury, rib fractures and greenstick fractures, non accidental bruises and injuries, retinal hemorrhages, blood-shot eyes and swelling under eyes.

One of the first aids to treat shaken baby syndrome include surgery and giving respiratory support. Surgery might include drainage of blood from brain to reduce internal swelling. An expert neurologist and ophthalmologist may have to be consulted for the matter. All necessary precautions to handle seizures should be followed. The child may need to be admitted in a hospital for treatment before he is fit enough to be sent back home. Remember, children look up to adults for support and protection. You might need to be alert and watch out for babies with weak neck muscles and an extra large head, which are some of the signs of shaken baby syndrome. It is our moral duty to provide them with protection.

Homeopathy and Eczema in Children

Dermatitis is a typical skin issue saw in kids. Treating dermatitis is a testing errand for pediatrics as a youngster’s skin is extremely delicate and customary treatment frequently compounds the condition. In any case, homeopathic solution for dermatitis has a few points of interest over customary treatment. Perused on to know more.

Eczema is a skin disorder which is characterized by itching and irritation. A form of eczema, atopic dermatitis is mostly observed in children. There are many causes of eczema, such as food, pollen, dust mite, mold, pet dander etc. It causes the skin to become red, dry, patchy and covers it with scales and boils. The severity of the symptoms vary from person to person. Although, the occurrence of eczema is on and around the face, it can affect other parts of the body as well. It affects babies, children and adults alike. However, when it comes to treating babies and children, pediatrics have to be extra careful. Most skin creams and lotions burn the sensitive skin of children and do more damage than good. Eczema research has shown that homeopathy has become the preferred way of treating eczema.

Homeopathy for Treating Eczema in Children

Homeopathy and eczema in children is quite a debatable topic. Though a few may swear by its success, most people still doubt its effectiveness. However, homeopathic medicines are unlikely to worsen the condition, since they are made from extracts of natural ingredients and are diluted to the degree sustainable for children. Homeopathy works according to the symptoms and not conditions. This approach works well as diseases manifest different symptoms among different people. The symptoms exhibited by every individual help identify their group type and thus, corresponding homeopathic medicine can be prescribed.

Before starting homeopathic treatment, the medical history of the child has to be checked. In case, the child is born with eczema or the condition developed soon after birth, inherited tendency or predisposition has to be looked for. The various types of homeopathic medicines that have met with success in treating child eczema are antimonium crudum, arsenicum album, arum triphyllum, calcarea carbonica, calendula, graphites, hepar sulfuris calcareum, mezereum, rhus toxicodendron, petroleum and sulfur.

The symptoms of eczema may aggravate due to change in diet, antibiotics or vaccination. Though steroids can sometimes help to get rid of eczema from the skin, they often induce side effects, such as respiratory or digestion problems. In such cases, sulfur is used as a homeopathic remedy. Sulfur helps to clean the eczema and restore the balance.

If a child is born with eczema or has a family history of eczema, inherited susceptibility becomes important. For such children, tuberculinum bovinum is a homeopathic remedy which strengthens the immune system and reduces susceptibility. The decreased susceptibility helps the body to heal naturally. Alumina is a homeopathic remedy recommended for children who have a craving for food that has the potential for aggravating eczema. Most food that children crave for are often the cause of constipation. Alumina relieves the child of constipation and thus gets rid of all skin problems.

Steroid treatment has to be ceased completely before starting homeopathic treatment. During initial phases of homeopathic treatment, the symptoms may seem to worsen, but that is an indication that the treatment is working. The first step of the medicine is to flush the body of substances that cause the skin problems. Cleansing the body from within restores the skin and eczema subsides eventually.

As mentioned before, the homeopathic remedy for eczema depends upon the symptoms, hence the child is prescribed a medicine that is likely to work for his symptoms. If it fails to work, another one can be tried. However, if the medicine works in the first instance, it should be continued until the occurrence of eczema subsides completely. Although homeopathic treatment often takes longer time than the conventional therapy, it often produces better results.