Child playing on play groundSome children have ears that are misshapen, misaligned, overly large, or of mismatched sizes. If you’ve decided to surgically correct the appearance of your child’s ears through pediatric otoplasty at Austin’s Wellspring Craniofacial Group, you may be wondering how to prepare your child for the upcoming surgery. After all, otoplasty is typically performed around age 5 or older, and many children of that age are completely aware of what a trip to the doctor usually entails. This is also an age at which the ears are pretty much developed, but children are still young enough that they haven’t been the victims of teasing or bullying because of their appearance. But your child may have never undergone any surgery before. How do you explain to him or her what is going to take place?

Dr. Cone and Dr. Langevin Strongly Urge Parents to Never Make Their Child Feel Self-Conscious About Their Appearance

Young children are impressionable, and even an innocent statement by a parent about the appearance of their child’s ears will be remembered. This is why Dr. Cone and Dr. Langevin strongly encourage Austin parents who choose pediatric otoplasty to continue building up and supporting their child with works of encouragement.  Studies show that parents play a large role in crafting a child’s “inner voice.” You definitely want to avoid using negative words to describe your child’s natural ear appearance, such as “bad,” “awkward,” or “ugly.”

Instead, explain the procedure as a simple matter of fact, such as, “You’re going to have surgery to make your ears the same size,” or “Dr. Cone and Dr. Langevin are going to make your ears more even.” Most children around the age of 5 are satisfied with these simple, straightforward explanations.

Explain to Your Child What Will Happen on Surgery Day

When it comes to children and surgery, preparation is key. Explain to your child what he or she can expect on surgery day, including:

  • You won’t be able to eat breakfast when you wake up in the morning,
  • Mom and dad are going to take you to the Austin hospital or surgery center where you’ll see Dr. Cone or Dr. Langevin again,
  • Nurses are going to have you change into a hospital gown so you’ll have a special outfit on for your surgery,
  • You’re going to have a mask with a balloon you need to blow up, and it’s going to make you very sleepy,
  • You’ll be completely asleep during your surgery, and you won’t feel a thing,
  • Mom and dad will be there when you wake up from your surgery.

Prepare Your Child for Recovery Time

Otoplasty is an outpatient procedure, so your child won’t have to spend the night in the Austin hospital where his or her procedure is performed. But you will want to make sure your child understands that:

  • They will wake up with a special band-aid on their ears,
  • They might hurt a little when waking up, but there’s medicine for that,
  • They will need to wear a special headband at night after the band-aid is taken off,
  • Bath time will need to be avoided for a few days,
  • And they will need to take a break from sports for a while, too.

Call Dr. Langvein and Dr. Cone for Help Preparing Your Child

If you’ve chosen Dr. Langevin and Dr. Cone for ear surgery and have questions about how to prepare your child for the big day, as well as the recovery time period, just call us and ask.

Having dedicated his career to working with children, Dr. Cone is very experienced about explaining big surgeries to little people. You can reach our office in Austin today at (512) 600-2888.