Preparing your child for a visit

Your child is likely to be anxious or nervous about a hospital stay or surgery. As a parent, you may not be sure what to say to your child and when to say it.

Age-appropriate information can relieve stress by taking some of the mystery out of what’s going to happen and give your child a better sense of involvement in the plans.

Our child life therapists are available to help your child and family better understand what’s going to happen and help prepare your child for their hospital experience.

Children who get an explanation about the procedure tend to be less fearful and anxious. With a greater understanding of what’s happening and their role, children tend to be better at following the provider’s instructions.

Provide accurate information and try to do it in gentlest possible language. Tell your child the purpose of the procedure, the anticipated sequence of events and how long it will take. You, your medical team or child life therapists may also be able to tell your child what they’ll see, hear, feel or smell.

Top tip for parents

When explaining anything about the hospital or a procedure, be honest with your child.

Don’t tell your child that a painful procedure isn’t going to hurt. Try to describe what they’re going to feel. For instance, when inserting an IV or giving a shot, a child life therapist usually tells the patient that it will feel similar to a bee sting.

There are age-specific steps you can take to help with pain.

If you don’t know the answer to a question your child asks, be honest and let them know you don’t know.

Plan Your Visit -5437

My child had a seizure. Is it epilepsy?

If your child has a seizure, it can be scary. What caused the seizure? Could your child have epilepsy? While epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders in the U.S., having a seizure […]

Read Full Story

Travel tips to help kids stay injury-free during holiday travel

Holiday travel can be filled with a lot of fun memories for kids — road trips with the entire family, visits to their grandma’s and grandpa’s house and more. Before families hit the road this […]

Read Full Story

What your donations to Norton Children’s funded in 2018

The life-changing care provided by Norton Children’s throughout Louisville, Kentucky and Southern Indiana wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of those who contribute to the Children’s Hospital Foundation. Over 30,000 donors gave a total of […]

Read Full Story

Huge jump in RSV cases among Louisville-area children

The increase in cases of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) bronchiolitis is persisting in the Louisville area, with more than 300 cases diagnosed by Norton Healthcare providers this season. The latest data, from just before the Thanksgiving […]

Read Full Story

New parent or new to town? Meet a pediatrician at a Newbie Night this month

Norton Children’s Medical Associates monthly open houses allow parents to meet staff and see our practice locations. These “Newbie Nights” are perfect for parents who are expecting or new to the area to meet providers […]

Read Full Story

Search our entire site.