Objective Anaesthesia, surgical intervention and hospitalisation have a significant effect in children’s later negative behaviour changes. In order to entertain the children we have started to provide them with colour pen sets and notebooks and children started to paint.
Methods Sixty children, aged 5–15 years, both genders, who were treated for different abdominal surgical procedures and spent more than two postoperative days in hospital, were included in the study. All children were provided with colour pen sets and notebooks in order to paint what they want. Our psychiatrists observe the children, analyse their paintings, and interpret them.
Results During the observations 42 children draw their own houses, because they want to go back home as fast as possible. 20 of 28 girls draw flowers, dolls and butterflies. They express the way they see the world in their paintings. Initially those children older than 12 years refused to collaborate, but they started to involve themselves in the drawings and painting activities after a while. The drawing and painting activities help children communicate with each other and create lovely friendships. The psychiatrist’s perception was that the child was not deeply affected by their condition and treatment did not change the child’s emotional response to the disease.
Conclusions Multiple interventions have been suggested to treat the preoperative behavioral stress responses in children; almost no outcome studies have evaluated the effects of the period during postoperative hospitalisation. We recommended this way of rehabilitation for all children who are in hospital rooms.
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