Childhood Diseases

Posted by: Peta | 2011/09/05


How to deal with hospital trauma?

Dear Dr
Tay has to be readmitted tomorrow for the changing of his g-tube to mickey. The doctor says it might be a day procedure but due to Tayden’ s history, he will decide after the operation whether he wants to keep him overnight or not. (I am not concerned either way, it is fine with me)

This will be Tayden’ s approximate 42 admission in less than 3 years and his 15 operation.

Each time he gets admitted, it is just getting more and more traumatic for him. The other day we saw our paed (Tay loves him) and Tayden flipped out –  because our paed was wearing theatre scrubs. If he sees anyone in scrubs, he gets beside himself and sobbing hysterically and it just breaks my heart.

How do l handle this and ensure that he doesn’ t get hysterical tomorrow again? I take him into theatre and unless he is sleeping, l usually end up having to hold him down while they put him under anesthetic and I don’ t think a mother could ever feel worse than that… 

I am dreading it so much, you have no idea. I hate seeing him like this, although I know it is for his own good. He is only 2 after all and doesn’ t understand!

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Expert's Reply



Going to hospital can be very traumatic for children of this age. This has been well known for many years and a long time ago I remember seeing a film made by a psychologist about the problems a child of this age has when being in hospital.With Tay his fears must be magnified many times with his repeated admissions and operations.Try to mention the positives about being in hospital such as other children being there to play with.Reassure him that you will be there with him.He must have his favourite teddy bear and comforters with him.Spend all the time you can with him while he is in hospital. His teddy bear must go to the theatre with him. You and his teddy bear will be waiting for him after the operation.Make sure that he is given adequate pain relief.I wish Tay good health.

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user comments


Posted by: Shelby | 2011/09/06

Hi Peta,

What illness does your son have? My 2 year old went into hospital for the first time last week for his tonsils and adenoids to be taken out and my eyes were always full of tears. I don''t know how you cope, you deserve a medal. When the anesthetist came to take him away, I wanted to curl up and cry.

Best wishes to you, if you are strong, your child will be strong.

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