Dealing with an injury can be mentally and physically exhausting. Caring for a hurting child while also managing work, a home and the rest of your family can be challenging. These four tips will help you to support your child through an injury and the healing process.
Share Special Treats
When your child has an injury, consider making some exceptions to your usual routines. If you do not typically allow your child to have sweet treats, make some fancy ice cream sundaes or have some hot chocolate with whipped cream on top. Have a pajamas day and eat dessert before your entree at dinnertime. Explain that this will not be the new routine, but that you wanted to do something special to make the time go by more easily.
Offer Age-appropriate Information
Children may feel reassured and supported if you can provide them with age-appropriate information about the injury. For example, if the injury is a broken arm, explain how keeping the arm still while the bone grows back together allows the body to heal. Avoid too much gory detail, and answer your child’s questions as they arise. If your child has questions for the doctor, make a list and bring it to the next appointment.
Consider Plastic Surgery
If your child’s injury involves scarring or disfigurement, consider plastic surgery. Other kids and even adults can be mean-spirited, staring at a child who has a scar or obvious injury. Professionals, like those at Shriners Hospitals for Children in Cincinnati, know that plastic surgery aims to restore the way that your child looked before he or she was injured. After your child heals, he or she may feel more confident when out in public.
Spend Quality Time Together
When recovering from an injury, the body needs time for resting and healing. Use this time to enjoy each other. Borrow some great books from the library or load some e-books onto your reader. Watch a fun movie or play some child-friendly video games from your sofa. If your child is artistic, consider learning something new such as crocheting or knitting. Give each other new hairstyles or paint each other’s toenails and fingernails.
The quality time you spend with your child during the healing process will create positive memories. Your child will see that you can be relied upon even during the most difficult life situations. These impressions will stay with your child, allowing him or her to establish a strong sense of self-confidence, independence and an ability to recognize when to ask for help.