How do I care for my child after sedation?
Your child will leave the hospital with After Sedation Care Instructions to help you understand the symptoms your child may experience after the procedure. Your child’s nurse will go over all of the instructions before you depart. For example, your child will be drowsy when leaving the hospital, so the hospital staff will require that you carry him/her or use a wheelchair to get to your car.
Activities for after sedation include the following:
- Your child will be drowsy after the procedure. How long this lasts will depend on the medication your child receives. Most children who receive sedation will be sleepy for a couple of hours and then improve quickly. However some children may take a long nap and be drowsy and irritable for up to 24 hours after sedation. The sedation nurse will inform you what to expect based on your child, the medication they received and the procedure they had done.
- We would advise if possible that two adults be with the child to drive home. One adult to drive and one to sit next to the child to make sure they do not become nauseous or fall asleep in an awkward position.
- Close parental observation, especially for the first 24 hours following sedation.
- A child may be unsteady when walking or crawling and will need protection against injury. An ADULT must be nearby at all times until the child is fully awake.
- Allow infants and toddlers to play only on carpeted floors. No riding toys should be allowed for the first 24 hours.
- Older children should rest in an area where an adult can supervise. Escort the child when walking (such as when going to the bathroom).
- A child should not be allowed to perform dangerous activities, such as riding bikes, playing outside, etc., until back to a normal state of awareness.
- We advise you against taking children to daycare following a procedure. He/she may return to normal activities on the day after the procedure, once the child has returned to a usual state of alertness and coordination.
- Follow all discharge instructions given to you by your child’s nurse.
Eating and Drinking Instructions after sedation
Infants under 18 months: Begin by feeding juices, formula and breast milk. If no vomiting occurs, continue with the child’s usual feeding routine.
Children over 18 months: Begin with clear liquids. If no vomiting occurs after 30 minutes, continue with solid foods.
*If your child does vomit, allow his/her stomach to settle for about 1 hour, then offer clear liquids. Do not force the child to drink. Have your child drink slowly (about 4-8 ounces over 30 minutes).
Reasons to call your doctor
- You have concerns regarding your child after sedation.
- Your child continues to vomit even after following the directions listed above.
- Your child does not return to his/her normal state of activity and coordination within 24 hours.
If you cannot
reach your doctor or the doctor who performed the procedure and you
still have concerns come to the emergency department at ETCH
For ANY emergencies, call 911.