The prospect of any type of surgery can be scary for your school-aged child, especially if this is their first surgery. Here at Alaska Pediatric Surgery in Anchorage, we want you to remember that your child looks to you for reassurance. You can help ease your child’s nerves about their upcoming surgery while also educating yourself with these easy to remember tips:
What is your school-aged child concerned about in regards to the surgery?
- They’re worried about losing control. They may also be worried about doing or saying embarrassing things.
- They may be worried that their body is going to be damaged or that the surgery will change how he or she looks.
- They may also be worried that they’re going to wake up during the surgery – a fear that both children and adults hold.
How can you personally prepare your school-aged child for their surgery?
- Give your school-aged a good amount of prep time. They have a good sense of time at this point in their lives so you should give them at least one to two weeks of time to process that they’re going to be having surgery. Offer to give them details about what will happen before, during, and after surgery if they’re curious but there’s no need to go into gruesome details. Make sure they know that they’re going to have a special doctor whose job it is to make sure they don’t feel anything during the surgery.
- Be supportive but honest! Treat your school-aged child as normal as possible during this time. Reassure them that it’s okay to talk about how he’s feelings.