how to comfort baby at the doctor? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 03:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Our little 3 1/2 month old had little spots of blood in his green mucousy poop a couple of days ago.  This was the first "health scare" for us and we freaked out a little bit.  We ended up going to see the doctor yesterday.

 

She went through the routine check, belly, bottom, etc.  Turns out his little butt hole was raw  - she said that it was possibly due to something new mom ate or something baby has a sensitivity to.

 

In any case, as she lubed up her finger and grabbed his legs, I knew the anal probing was about to commence.  I held his little hands and looked into his eyes.  At first, he was ok, but as she "looked around" he turned beet red and started screaming.  It didn't last more than a five seconds but it felt like an eternity.  His eyes looked straight at me and I could swear they were pleading for help. 

 

As soon as the doctor was done, I put his diaper on, didn't even finish buttoning up his onesie and picked him up and sang to him while mom talked to the doctor about diet stuff.  It took less than a minute for him to settle down.

 

Question is, is there a better way to sooth the baby?  Holding his little hands and looking into his eyes was heartbreaking.  I'm not sure what else one can do... kind of limited by whatever the doctor is doing.

 

Any ideas?


Christian, father of Santiago (HB 9/6/10) and loving husband to Wendy.
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#2 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 07:31 AM
 
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Whenever there's any examination outside of the norm, or when my baby gets vaccinations, I always insist on actually holding her. My doctor doesn't mind at all. I would imagine that it still would have been uncomfortable for him (especially since it was raw, the poor love!) but at least he would have been held by the people he loves and trusts. I also nurse her immediately afterwards, before I even leave the exam room.


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#3 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 10:07 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cecilia's Mama View Post

Whenever there's any examination outside of the norm, or when my baby gets vaccinations, I always insist on actually holding her. My doctor doesn't mind at all. I would imagine that it still would have been uncomfortable for him (especially since it was raw, the poor love!) but at least he would have been held by the people he loves and trusts. I also nurse her immediately afterwards, before I even leave the exam room.


yeahthat.gif  I try to nurse during the procedure or immunization too.

 

I also ask the doc exactly  what he is going to do, so I can talk my baby through it.  I think that being able to say "this is going to fell uncomfortable, but it will be done soon" or something similar helps.  They understand so much even though they are so little!  Plus this allows me to politely decline any procedure that I feel may not be necessary, or at least to ask the doc if there is another option, what is gained by doing this, etc.

 

My doc does the entire exam with my ds in my arms orngbiggrin.gif

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#4 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 10:27 AM
 
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Poor baby! My son had a little impaction when he was a newbie and he got one of those "digital exams" and he wasn't super pleased. I also hold the baby when possible, but with these exams it isn't always possible for them to get to the place they want to go to with them in your arms. I put my cheek next to his sometimes but mostly I just get everything ready before the unpleasant thing happens so that I can soothe him right away.


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#5 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 11:12 AM
 
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Breastfeeding during any procedure can be very comforting (if mom is available).

 

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#6 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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I breastfed thru their selective vaxes and any thing out of the ordinary. 


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#7 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 06:36 PM
 
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I think you holding his hands and making eye contact with him was a great thing to do. You were there for him and comforting him even though he was distressed by the examination (and who wouldn't be!).

 

Ad you said, it depends very much on what is being done but, as PPs have said, breastfeeding and holding are other options. If those aren't possible then some type of physical contact such as hand holding, stroking the hair or forehead or even the foot/knee whatever you can get access too. Singing or murmuring gently in their ear if you can get close to their ear. And then again, exactly what you did, picking them up and comforting them as soon as possible afterwards.

 

Unfortunately there will be circumstances when none of these things will be enough to stop the tears but I believe very strongly that they matter anyway and that providing whatever comfort you can is heaps better than adding parental abandonment to the pain or fear of what is happening to them. And probably does reduce their stress response as well even if we can't actually tell.

 

And be kind to yourself and each other too. It is *so* stressful when your baby is upset and hurting. Give each other a hug as soon as you can and take some deep breaths and relax your muscles.

 

I also think it was a great idea that one of you focussed on comforting your little fellow while the other spoke to the doctor. I think that is another way to help minimise everyones stress.

 

I hope your little one is feeling better soon.


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#8 of 8 Old 12-23-2010, 07:37 PM
 
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Katelove- You're so right. Having one parent responsible for the baby and one for the doctor is so ideal. I often wish my husband was able to come to doctors appointments because it's very difficult to really pay attention to what the doctor is saying when you have a crying hurting baby on your hands.


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