Five Things Your Child Needs from You During a Blood Draw

You’re the mom. Do you know how much power you have to encourage your child? During an blood draw or IV start, the way you react to and control the situation will in large part determine how your child will respond. We can either choose to feel petrified by that or feel empowered by that. I hope in some small way it makes you feel good to know that your influence matters. In other posts about IVs and blood draws I’ll talk about specific strategies for pain relief and coaching skills. Here let’s just talk about the basics. I’m going to speak using the pronouns he/him for this article but please know everything applies to girls as well.

  1. He is looking to you, his emotional mediator, to know how to react to what is happening. This is the time to pull up your big girl panties, muster your courage and put on a encouraging, calm but focused face. Deep breaths, staying at eye level and being within 18 inches of his eyesight is absolutely crucial.
  2. He needs to know that even though you aren’t the one doing the procedure, you are in charge of who is touching him and what they are doing. That means you need to step up and pace the nurses. You tell them when to start, you tell them if you need to take a break, you tell them if you need to stop and try a different approach.
  3. He needs very short, clear, positive expectations of what is going to happen. Less is better. As women sometimes we slip into to-much-information mode. The younger the child, the less detail is necessary.
  4. He needs reassuring, steady touch, verbal encouragement and visual distraction during the procedure itself.
  5. Immediately afterwards he needs enthusiastic praise and a chance to tell you how he feels about what happened.

Photo credit: Jagrap via photopin cc

About Emily

Hi, my name is Emily. I’m a wife, mother, christian, momcologist, doula, writer, nerd, entrepreneur and dreamer. I like Apple products, chocolate, books, lists, being pregnant and the color purple. I fancy myself as a quirky combination of dreamy Anne Shirley and feisty Scarlett O’Hara but in a schizophrenic sort of way. Read on...

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