Recovery After Procedural Sedation (Child)

Your child was given medicine to get ready for a procedure. This may have included both a pain medicine and a sleeping medicine. Most of the effects will wear off before your child goes home. But drowsiness may continue for the first 6 to 8 hours after the procedure.

Home care

Follow these guidelines after your child returns home:

  • Watch your child closely for the first 12 to 24 hours after the procedure. Don’t leave your child alone in the bath or near water. Don't let your child skateboard, skate, or ride a bike until he or she is fully alert and has normal balance. This is to help prevent injuries.

  • It’s OK to let your child sleep. But always ask your child's healthcare provider how often you should wake your child. When you wake your child, check for the signs in "When to seek medical advice" (below).

  • Don’t give your child any medicine during the first 4 hours after the procedure unless your child's healthcare provider tells you to. Certain medicines such as those for pain or cold relief might react with the medicines your child was given for the procedure. This can cause a much stronger response than usual.

  • If your child is old enough to drive, don't allow him or her to drive for at least 24 hours. Your child should also not make any important business or personal decisions during this time.

Follow-up care

Follow up with your child's healthcare provider, or as advised. Call your child's healthcare provider if you have any concerns about how your child is breathing. Also call your child's healthcare provider if you are concerned about your child's reaction to the procedure or medicine.

When to seek medical advice

Call your child's healthcare provider right away if any of these occur:

  • Drowsiness that gets worse

  • Unable to wake your child as usual

  • Weakness or dizziness

  • Cough

  • Fast breathing. One breath is counted each time your child breathes in and out.

    • For newborn to 6 weeks old, more than 60 breaths per minute

    • For a child 6 weeks to 1 year, more than 58 breaths per minute

    • For a child 1 to 2 years, more than  40 breaths per minute

    • For a child 2 to 6 years old, more than 32 breaths per minute

    • For a child 6 to 12 years old, more than 25 breaths per minute

    • For a child older than 12, more than 20 breaths per minute

  • Slow breathing:

    • For newborn to 6 weeks old, fewer than 35 breaths per minute

    • For a child 6 weeks to 1 year, fewer than 30 breaths per minute

    • For a child 1 to 2 years old, fewer than 22 breaths per minute

    • For a child 2 to 6 years old, fewer than 20 breaths per minute

    • For a child 6 to 12 years old, fewer than 18 breaths per minute

    • For a child older than 12, fewer than 12 breaths per minute

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