Monday, March 21, 2011

Two successful blood draws in a row—could this be a new trend?

If you have been reading this blog for awhile, you may remember that my son, C, has a history of difficult blood draws . However, after trying several ways to make it better, we finally had a good experience with the blood draw at C’s 21 month visit. However, I wasn’t sure if that good experience would just be a fluke or if he would continue to do well with the blood draws.

For the 24 month visit, I did all the same things that had worked well, like putting on the numbing cream at home and spending lots of time to prepare him for the visit. When we arrived at the TEDDY clinic, he was a little shy and clingy at first but soon was taking all the toys out of the toy box and acting just as comfortable as he did at home. He’s definitely wanting to be very independent though, so we did have a little bit of trouble when it was time to take off his shoes to measure his height because in his mind, it wasn’t time to take off shoes. Fortunately, he also likes to do things that others are doing, so when TEDDY staff member B and I took our shoes off, he was happy to show off that he could do it too.

I’ll admit that I was the one who was nervous about collecting the toenail sample. At home, toenail clipping is always a two-person job, with my husband doing a great job of distracting C while I clip the tiny nails. I’m always so afraid of cutting skin and C’s feet never seem to stay still. Since I didn’t have my husband to help, I had to resort to the bribery of a lollipop that TEDDY had available. Sure, it turned C’s mouth, face, and collar bright blue, but it definitely did its job of keeping him happy, not just for the toenail clipping but also for the entire blood draw! I think the blood draw was over before either C or I even realized it had started.

In a way, I’m glad to have experienced some difficulties with the TEDDY visits because it has been a really good way for me to learn how to help C deal with other difficult experiences, like going to the doctor or getting his hair cut. I’m feeling confident that we have turned a corner with TEDDY and that we’ll continue to have pleasant visits in the future.