Kids with Special Needs

All children, including those with special developmental needs such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, may benefit from special calming techniques and equipment for their procedure. Our sedation suite has a wide selection of toys and equipment specially designed to calm children before, during and after their procedure. 

If your child with special needs has a very rigid daily routine and needs pediatric sedation for a procedure or test, please tell the Sedation Unit scheduler. We may be able to provide: 

  • An early appointment to make it easier to manage fasting 
  • A later appointment to lessen the disruption to your child’s daily routine. 

If your child has significant challenges in the hospital setting or other similar settings, we encourage you to let the nurse know when they call to complete your child’s intake process or when they call with final instructions the day before your child’s procedure. Our team can use this information to better prepare for your visit and to connect your family with a Child Life Specialist prior to the hospital visit if you are interested. 

We also encourage you to share your child’s strengths and challenges with care providers during the visit, as well as the best ways to approach and work with your child. 


Items to Bring

Here are a few ideas about items you may bring from home to help your child with his hospital experience: 

  • Distracting items (such as toys, books, DVD players, video game players) 
  • Comforting items (such as stuffed animals, blanket, binky/pacifier, music, noise-blocking headphones, sensory stimulation items) 
  • Any communication aids your child uses 
  • Reinforcers your family uses with your child 
  • Special items your child may need, such as a specific cup to drink from or specific drinks for after the procedure 
  • Other specific items that may be helpful to bring for when your child is asleep after their sedation (such as fingernail clippers, facial hair razor, etc.) 

Environmental Modifications 

If you’re the parent or guardian of a child with special needs, please let us know what will help your child feel most comfortable during your stay.