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Patient and family resources
Patient and family resources

Tips and Tools to Create your Own Comfort Kit

Pain relief: Use these items to help your child cope with pain

Being in hospital can be difficult, especially if your child is in pain. This can be caused by procedures or treatments (acute) or due to illness or injury (chronic).

You can help ease your child’s pain using play and imagination. These methods can work in hospital or at home. If this is your child’s first experience with the hospital setting, Child Life Specialists can help you.

The strategies listed below can work well with the pain medication your child might need. The toys in this list encourage children to make choices about what may work best for them.

Note: Comfort Kits with many distraction toys are available in most areas of SickKids where treatments and procedures happen. Please visit this link to learn more.

   

Wand

Why this works: A wand can help your child pay attention to something else and encourages imagination.
Ideas:

  • Use the wand to make the hurt disappear ("like kiss it better")
  • Concentrate on the movement of the sparkles
  • Make the want magic and travel to a favourite place
 

Bubbles

Why this works:  Using bubbles can help teach deep breathing which can relieve stress and anxiety.
Ideas:

  • Blow with long slow breaths
  • Have the child blow the hurt away
  • Predict where the bubbles will land and pop
  • Have a contest to see who can blow the bubbles the furthest
  • How many bubbles can you blow at once?ave the patients "blow the hurt away"
  

Story and Activity Books

Why this works: Books can help your child pay attention to something else and encourages imagination.
Ideas:

  • Books for younger children that have various texture/rhymes/pop-op's involve touching various textures
  • Books for older children involve mazes, searches and puzzles
  • Pick books that are simple and familiar
  • As questions about the book that cannot be answered yes or no or maybe.  For example: 'what do you thing will happen next'?
  

Music

Why this works: Music is relaxing, soothing and can be played in the background while your child is focusing on a different activity.
Ideas:

  • Music is relaxing, soothing and can be played in the background while your child is focusing on a different activity
  • Child can sing or hum with the music
  • Can be useful in encouraging movement
  •   Encourages children to clap, bang their fists or click their tongue to the beat of the music
  • Useful when child not able to do a more interactive game
  

View Master

Why this works: A view master provides 3D visual distraction.
Ideas:

  • Have your child choose a slide
  • Get your child to describe what he sees
  • Your child can create his own story based on what he sees
  

Video games, computer, television

  • Create a balance for your child while they are in hospital between activities like electronics and other more creative and expressive experiences
  

Stress Ball

Why this works: This is a good place to transfer nervous energy and gives the child a ‘job’ to do.
Ideas:

  •  Transfer pain or stress onto the ball and out of your body
  •  Encourage your child to count how long he can squeeze the ball
  •  Count along while your child opens and closes his fist around the ball
  •  Transfer the ball from one hand to another