Children and pre-teens (Ages 6 to 11 years)
Your child is entering an exciting new stage in life and development. Strollers and potty-training are a thing of the past, as are the initial encounters of living with hemophilia. As you move ahead to the beginning school years, it is important to understand the next level of development, milestones and issues related to hemophilia. Staying informed and prepared will help you continue this journey with your child successfully!
How can I help my child recognize and tend to bleeds
Since you can no longer watch every move your child makes, you must rely on your child to recognize and tell you or others about bleeds. He or she is probably very active throughout the day and may not be interested in slowing down to focus on treating bleeds. Identifying and treating a bleed promptly are essential to maintaining healthy joints and muscles.
Now is the time emphasis must be placed on:
- Helping your child understand what a bleed is
- Ensuring he or she knows how to identify a bleed
- Understanding the importance of promptly treating a bleed
- Emphasizing the importance of prompt treatment
- Explaining the consequences of delayed treatment
How can I help my child become an active participant in his or her care
Children ages 6 to 11 can learn more in-depth detail about their disease and its treatment, such as when and how factor is given, as well as treatment options.
Here are some tasks you can give your child to help him or her become an active partner in his or her own care.
Keep a running list of all the medical supplies you have at home for hemophilia care (you can help with this). This helps you keep track of the supplies you have, to plan for your next order, and to be prepared for emergencies (such as natural disasters or times when supply delivery might be delayed).
Fill out treatment logs
- Order medical supplies and log them on your list of supplies when they arrive at your home
- Be an active partner with doctors, nurses and other members of his or her care team
- Ask your hematologist if you should use a pain-relief cream before your infusions to numb the area where the needle will be placed.
- Talk with teachers, coaches and others at school about hemophilia and special needs he or she may have. Download the Accredo Coach and Educator guide for detailed information.
- Talk openly with other children at school about hemophilia and how your child manages it
- Only give your child pain medication that has been prescribed or recommended by a healthcare professional who is familiar with the child’s bleeding disorder.
- Remind him or her that medication that contains aspirin or an NSAID (a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug) should not be taken. These drugs can prolong bleeding. Read the label on any medication you use to see what’s in it. Also, check with your pharmacist when a medication is prescribed. Aspirin also can be listed as ASA (acetylsalicylic acid).1
As a parent, you will be amazed at all the things your child will learn, experience and accomplish during this brief five-year span — from mastering cursive writing and multiplication tables to gaining independence and becoming more involved in his or her care.
This time provides a chance to bond with your child before heading into adolescence, a stage that has its own milestones and challenges. As your child matures, you will find additional valuable information about future life stages.
For additional information about hemophilia and your school-aged child’s involvement in care, general well-being, physical development and activity, pain management, nutrition, dental care and social interactions, download:
- 1Medical and Scientific Advisory Council of National Hemophilia Foundation. Recommendation #175: "Guidelines for emergency department management of individuals with hemophilia". October 2006. hemophilia.org/sites/default/files/document/files/175.pdf. Accessed Aug. 9, 2017.