At time of preparation, your child is given a card containing an explanation of the procedure, which your child can put in their own folder. You can use this card to prepare your child at home if your child is to undergo the same procedure again. And you can also use it to explain the procedure to your other children.
The following tips may help you to help and prepare your child. Bear in mind: You know your child best and know what suits your child best.
When do you prepare your child?
- Choose a quiet time to prepare your child.
- Give your child plenty of opportunity to ask questions.
- Take your child's wishes and sense of time into account. Some children like to be prepared shortly beforehand, others need more time to process things.
- If you have other children, tell them what's going to be done. That's how you keep them engaged.
- Never prepare your child just before their bedtime.
What do you tell your child and how?
- Ask your child what they already know about the examination or operation.
- Explain things as simply as possible and choose words that your child understands.
- Do not give a young child all the information at once.
- Be honest and to the point, but don't emphasize nasty things like injections and pain.
- Only talk about what your child is aware of.
- See if your child understands the information.
- Have your child repeat the information. That way you know whether your child has understood everything correctly.
- Ask what your child thinks and how they feel about the examination or operation.
- Consider together what can be of help: a (read-aloud) book, a cuddly toy or favorite toy, holding your hand or singing a song.
During treatment, your child will be given Champion beads to thread onto their Champion chain. That makes their treatment tangible.
How can you help your child?
- Accompany your child on the way to the examination or surgery; that will give your child support and a sense of safety.
- If you are not in a position to accompany your child, make sure someone else who your child trusts goes along.
- The procedure is explained during the course of the examination or the operation. You and your child can always ask questions if there is anything you do not understand.
- Try to stay as calm as possible during the examination or operation. That will also help to keep your child calm.
- Try to focus your attention on your child.
- If your child does not respond as expected, take it seriously.
- Being there for your child makes them feel supported and understood.
If you are referred to one of the shared care hospitals, be aware that examinations or operations there can be performed slightly differently than what you are used to in the Máxima Center.
If you need help or advice, please do not hesitate to contact one of the medical pedagogical care providers.