The significance of preparing our child for a blood sampling.
In rare occasions (and hopefully always precautionally) the pediatrician might decide that a child must undergo medical examinations. The necessity of a blood test in children depends on the pediatrician’s evaluation of the child’s clinical condition, their unique features or their hereditary medical background.
Blood sampling can be a very stressful procedure for most children and it’s common for them to express fear and refuse to cooperate.
Parents and doctors can help the child deal with the natural pain, the discomfort, the fear, the anxiety and any other negative feelings they might have related to the examination procedure.
Regardless of age, we can help them realize and understand that the whole blood sampling process is carried out in order to monitor the condition of their health, which is our most valuable asset.
Prevention saves lives and it’s very useful to include it in our lifestyle and in our culture from early on.
To make it easier for our children to follow medical advice, to understand the importance of medical examinations and to trust doctors, we as adults must handle their reactions with a great deal of patience.
Before visiting the microbiological center, it would be very useful to do the following:
Prepare your child mentally.
Avoid telling them fictional stories and lies.
Be honest but also comforting.
We must explain the importance of monitoring our health and listening to our doctor’s orders, with compassion and in a way suitable for the child’s age.
Then, we should calmly explain how and why the blood sampling will occur and give them time to get used to the idea before there is any contact.
Avoid telling your child that blood sampling is painless. Describe the whole experience to them using familiar images and feelings, like for example that the pain resembles the sting of a mosquito bite that lasts for about ten seconds.
You could include a quick rehearsal during their everyday playtime at home. Display the whole procedure by performing it on them first and them encourage them to do the same on a toy like a teddy bear or a doll. You could also use toys like doctors’ cases or medical bags,
which encourage role playing games.
Assure your child that you will be right next to them throughout the whole procedure.
Schedule a reward for your child’s decision to participate and for their courage.
After the blood sampling, you can plan to do something fun like a visit to the amusement park or any other activity that your child enjoys. There are plenty of things you can do that can serve both as a reward and also as a chance for spending quality time together.
Select a date and time in which your schedule is open and have very few other responsibilities.
A good suggestion would be Saturday where you are more likely to have plenty of time to spare.
Provide plenty of water.
If the examination does not restrict liquid consumption, then it’s very important to offer your child plenty of water. Water greatly increases blood pressure, making the blood sampling procedure much easier.
Allow your child to bring their favorite toy with them like a teddy bear or a hug toy. Anything that keeps it calm and helps it feel secure.
During the examination.
It is advisable to have as few people as possible in the examination room.
The room where the blood sampling will take place must not be crowded because that might cause agitation and stress to the child.
Keep a calm voice when talking to your child.
It’s advisable to use a calm and low voice when talking to your child during the blood sampling procedure or to sing to them something they like. Some parents choose to count down from ten with their children during the process, in order to distract them.
Methods of distraction.
It is also very useful for the room to have many things that easily attract the attention of the child.
For infants and toddlers.
Parents need to hold their baby in their arms during the blood sampling process. Your body stature must project calmness and security. Holding the child steady during the whole procedure is of great importance for swift and successful blood sampling.
In older children.
We offer them the chance to sit on their own. The parent may hold their child’s free hand and always maintain eye contact with them.
The role of the parent.
Why does my child cry so much during the blood sampling procedure?
It has not been properly prepared.
It has not fully understood the process.
It is their first time so it’s something totally foreign to them.
It was immobilized unpleasantly.
The procedure was not carried out with patience and understanding by the medical staff.
Parents are projecting their stress on to them.
The parents’ assistance is crucial so that the child can overcome possible fear, stress, discomfort, and other unpleasant sentimental reactions that they might experience during the blood sampling. Parents must help their child feel safe by remaining calm throughout the whole procedure.
The fear and anxiety of the parents is projected twofold on to the child.
Parents must keep their composure before, during and after the blood sampling procedure. Even in cases where the child is crying, does not cooperate and displays aggressive behavior, they must remain calm and hide their possible emotional load. There is a serious reason that the doctor has recommended these examinations and they must be executed to secure their child’s health and safety. Parents must always keep this in mind and not succumb to their children’s reactions.
Even if they themselves are scared of the blood sampling procedure or are very nervous about the results, they should not display it openly because their anxiety can be easily detected and adapted by their children.
Parents should trust the experienced medical staff by following their instructions and fully cooperating with them because they too want what is best for the child participating in the examination.
With many years of experience and with full knowledge about the peculiarities of blood sampling in young ages, our microbiological laboratory has been specifically designed to be a pleasant, comfortable, familiar and friendly environment.
We believe that all children, young and old, deserve to endure the least possible pain and discomfort during any examination.
Our main concern is for your visit to be as easy and painless as possible, for the children and the parents alike. We use special pediatric needles (butterfly needles) for the puncture of peripheral veins and also special pediatric blood sampling belts. Our medical staff is fully trained and very experienced in handling children and they can ensure a safe and swift procedure.
We vouch to offer you direct support and treat your child’s worries with plenty of responsibility, respect and love, making your visit to our microbiological center a humane and warm experience.