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It's natural to be anxious about any hospital stay, even when you know you are in great hands. But we want to put your mind at ease, because if you are nervous, your child will pick up on it. So, do everything you can to feel as calm and confident as possible.
Learn as much as you can about where you are going, what you'll need to do and what will happen while you are here. Our experience has shown the more parents know about what to expect, the better parents and kids feel.
Talk with your child's doctor or staff before you check in. Go over procedures or tests in detail, so you'll know exactly what to expect. Use this website or our Family Health Library to do some research on your own.
While no place will ever be as comfortable as your own home, we try very hard to make sure all of the necessary amenities are here for you. Depending on your child's treatment, you'll probably be able to stay with your child and your child will be able to have visits from friends and other family members. Use the About Your Visit section of this site to learn all you need to know.
Take time before your visit to learn how to get to the hospital, where to park and where to go once you get here.
You and your child will undoubtedly meet other children and parents at the hospital. Some of them may be more ill than your child. That's often more scary for adults than children. Kids have a unique ability to look beyond illness. They play, laugh and make new friends. They act like kids. That's why we have so many playrooms throughout the hospital.
Don't underestimate the toll stress and worry can take on you. Spend time with family and friends. Make sure you are well rested and well fed. Your child will be counting on you for support and comfort.
The more your child knows about what to expect, the more comfortable and relaxed he will be. Be sure to include the entire family in one of your pre-hospital talks so your child doesn't feel alone and the rest of the family understands as well.
Here are some things you might want to discuss with your child before the visit:
When you're in the hospital with your child, you may hesitate to speak up or ask questions. This video empowers parents, patients and other advocates to speak up in the hospital room by offering phrases and questions that help everyone communicate. Use this script next time you are in the hospital to make sure you are included and understand what is going on with your child's care.