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How do you prepare your child for general anesthetic?

(22 Posts)
claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 12:19:23

Prompted by another thread. Ds 5 is going into hospital next month to have 6 teeth removed under general anesthetic and i have no idea what to tell him.

I think not telling him until the day before will be a good idea, but what to say?

Any thoughts or ideas much appreciated.

DLI Fri 28-Aug-09 18:37:36

i would speak to the hospital staff who will be looking after you ds (dentist etc) as how best to handle it. My ds is going in hospital for an operation on his palate (he is nearly 6) and as he has a serious fear of needles he is going to see a psychologist first so she can chat him etc. They may be able to offer you some advice on what to say etc, alternatively speak to your GP.

devientenigma Fri 28-Aug-09 18:47:47

Hi,my ds has recently had 12 teeth out under ga. He wouldn't allow any blood pressure checks etc to be done. Neither would he take the medication to calm him to let them do obs. He literally went down to the operating theatre and got the mask wafted near him for a while until he couldn't fight any more. It's no good talking to my ds before hand as he is too severly delayed. HTH.

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 18:51:02

My ds also has a serious fear of needles and dentists. He is also tactile and orally defensive. My GP is useless, I will talk to the staff on the day and see what they suggest.

On one hand i know he will be petrified and he is going to freak out if he so much as sees a needle or thinks they will even be looking in his mouth, im wondering whether to say anything at all. On the other hand if i dont say anything im worried he will never trust me again.

Is your son already aware that he is going to have an operation? Have you spoken to him at all?

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 18:59:11

Hi Devient, how awful.

Why did he have to have 12 teeth out if you dont mind me asking? Does he grind them?

I cant think of anything that i can say to him that is going to make the experience any less stressful for him.

devientenigma Fri 28-Aug-09 19:08:34

Hi Claw, my ds is also very tactile and orally defensive. He is nearly 9 and for the last 4 years school have been working on getting him to hold the toothbrush never mind brush his teeth, or with paste. Yes he grinds them but they were decayed so much also. As he has a heart condition he is also at risk of endochartitis which is caused by bacteria in the mouth and can be fatal, so they had to come out.
I don't know how your son responds but what ablout playing with a teddy or making a story about what could happen. HTH.

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 19:31:33

My ds wont have toothpaste, he wont brush himself, but i get about a 2 second time slot where he will let me put the toothbrush in his mouth! So limited brushing, terrible diet, medication and grinding (he has exposed the nerves) has taken its toll.

Are some of those his 'big' teeth?

He would be fine with a story, as long as he didnt think it related to him! He will be fine with going to the hospital, but he is totally going to freak when he realises needles are involved and if i tell him they are going to remove teeth i will have to take him to the hospital kicking and screaming.

Perhaps it would be better not to tell him and play it by ear.

devientenigma Fri 28-Aug-09 20:38:05

It may be best to play it by ear. I do with mine but thats because of sld. Although I do give warning. e.g. when I put my shoes on we are going in the car. I do talk and tell him he's good/fine/thumbs up while things are going on. Maybe if you don't worry about it, it also won't rub off on ds. Hard I know or maybe sucking eggs sorry.
No it wasn't any big teeth, however with ds being down syndrome sometimes a 2nd set isn't there or some are missing. My ds is also very strong and could give any heavyweight boxer a good few rounds for his money but once that ga took hold he was helpless. The mask wasn't even put on his face. Just held near in the middle of fights. HTH. Good luck x

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 21:12:48

Thanks devientenigma for listening, i suppose there isnt always an easy solution, just fingers crossed and hope for the best will have to do!

DLI - good luck with your ds's surgery too.


vjg13 Fri 28-Aug-09 21:18:51

My daughter has had 6 operations and is about to have her 7th. We don't bother with the 'magic numbing cream' on her hands now as they always struggle to find a vein so she is restrained and has the gas induction. It is very hard becuase she is 11 now and big. This would have the advantage for your son of being out before he sees a needle.

On her last visit the anaesthetist was keen for her to have an oral pre med drink because although it may not have made her drowsy it would give an amnesia effect about how horrilble the whole thing is so you could ask about that too. Unfortunately she refused it and I was tempted to have it to take the edge of things! grin

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 21:28:55

Wow thats a lot and you appear to still be sane, so there is hope for me!

He is also fearful of having anything on his face or hands and i doubt very much he will drink a med.

LOL I too on the other hand will take anything he refuses

vjg13 Fri 28-Aug-09 21:37:39

Do you have to go for a pre op visit the week before? Some children find this helpful apparently hmm to have a look round and they sometimes show a video.

I must add (on the sanity front) that I have never been into the anaesthetic bit and my husband comes out shaking and white! Have someone with you on the day to help out too. My daughter can be very weepy and confused for a short while when she comes round.

claw3 Fri 28-Aug-09 21:49:20

Im not sure about the pre op visit. Community dentist made the appointment over the phone, when we had an emergency visit with an abscess. Details will follow in the post.

My mum is coming down to stay over night and will be with me. Although i will be strong and calm on the day, im dreading it. Thanks for the insight

devientenigma Fri 28-Aug-09 22:22:25

Must also add the longest op ds had was an 8hr op on his heart. The teeth op was about 3. Although the time wasn't as long the feelings were the same. Like a numbness. It doesn't matter how much you prepare yourself for this, it's still just as hard. HTH, take care x.

2shoes Fri 28-Aug-09 22:29:42

can I pop in and ask a question please, how do you explain the needle in tha hand bit
dd(14 and CP) is due her first op in october, I am trying to explain the needle that is left in the hand after, I remember it was the one thing that freaked ds(nt)

vjg13 Sat 29-Aug-09 09:53:13

2shoes, last time they bandaged up my daughter's teddy to look the same so when she saw it the teddy had a matching one. Then when they came to take it out teddy had his done first! It worked quite well for her but I'm not sure for an older child.

devientenigma Sat 29-Aug-09 21:00:39

Hi 2shoes, if it helps, my son had his hand strapped up really well and a glove on top. Although ds is nearly 9 not 14.

devientenigma Sat 29-Aug-09 21:01:14

Hope it all goes well for everyone, take care x

porgie Sun 30-Aug-09 21:13:42

I am an anaesthetic sister i can tell you what happens and what i tell the kids if you like. I also have a little one with ASD so i can sympathise with the freaking thing!!!

claw3 Sun 30-Aug-09 21:33:04

Thanks Porgie that would be great, im hoping we will have someone who understands sensory issues on the day.

porgie Sun 30-Aug-09 22:07:40

oh my god just typed a 20000 word essay to you and it's dissapeared!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
have to go to bed now and weep, and get ready for the 5 o'clock wake up call.
will try again tomorrow!! boo hoo.

claw3 Sun 30-Aug-09 22:14:47

LOL never mind, thanks for trying, sleep well x

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