Decrease Needle Fear and Pain with Smileyscope

There was a recent study by the US National Library of Medicine that states that 50% of children have needle fear. Adults can also struggle, especially when they have experienced a traumatic needle procedure as a child.

Child life specialists provide developmentally appropriate information about medical procedures and teach children coping skills.  One tool that many specialists incorporate is virtual reality (VR) goggles. Being immersed in a VR game or video can help distract patients and allow medical providers to complete their job without causing trauma.

I’m thrilled to share an amazing new resource that is supporting children with needle fear, Smileyscope. I had the opportunity to play with SmileyScope and see all the features it offers. The one thing that I loved the most is that it provides patients with an underwater experience that aligns with receiving a needle procedure such as a blood draw, vaccination, or port access.

Guest Blogger, Michelle Loughery from Smileyscope 

Understanding from other Child Life Specialists I have talked with, Covid-19 has significantly changed the way your profession supports children and families’ medical experiences. There is now an innovative option that reframes needle procedures – which children fear the most – and can assist you on several levels. Smileyscope will enable you to be better equipped to ‘social distance,’ while still successfully achieving your objectives to improve patients’ fear and anxiety in stressful environments.

Smileyscope is a 510K exempt, Class I medical-grade Virtual Reality (VR) goggle with proprietary software for:

  • Needle procedures – a choreographed “underwater adventure” to help reduce pain, anxiety, and first-stick success, with virtual waves that match when the clinician cleans with antiseptic, and fish nibble when the needle is inserted (this is patented and unique to Smileyscope)
  • Deep breathing – to support patients during times of high anxiety and distress, with a focus on being calm
  • Wellness – mindfulness and relaxation with music therapy, to allow children to virtually visit with seals and kittens, and also experience a virtual “cafe”

The goal is to improve the experience for the patient, parents, and health care providers and to reduce workplace disruption and costly delays or multiple attempts of the procedure. Smileyscope was developed by a multidisciplinary team – including CLSs – with two large RCT trials performed (The Journal of Pediatrics) documenting the efficacy in reducing pain, anxiety, and the need for restraints in patients 4-11 years of age. The facilities in which the trial took place were Monash Children’s and Royal Children’s Hospitals, both in Melbourne, Australia, where Smileyscope as a company was founded.

Smileyscope’s VR goggles are specifically designed for easy disinfection between patients and exceeds hospital infection control standards. It is very easy to learn and use, requiring no change to your standard protocols for blood draws, IV catheters, or port accesses. Although several anesthesiologists have mentioned the need to wait to place an IV, provide a nerve block, or do a lumbar puncture after the child is sedated, all of these processes are done in the OR. Those in this arena understand Smileyscope could benefit them by using it as a distraction initially, eliminating the delay.

Where to Purchase

You can order Smileyscope directly from their website, by calling (888) 300-7117 or emailing sales@smileyscope.com.

Be sure to follow Smileyscope on Facebook, Instagram, and Linkedin.

 

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Cell phones – carcinogen or not? The fear of the unknown

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Guest Blogger, Jennifer Costa

For the past 12 years, I have been working as a Certified Child Life Specialist in pediatric oncology. During these years, I have had the privilege to work with incredible children and their families. This work has also convinced me more and more about the importance of preventative measures and overall wellness. I try to eat healthy, exercise and get enough sleep.   Now that I am a mother myself, I try my best to do everything possible to keep my children safe.

Every day we are all surrounded by cell phones, IPads and other electronics. Each of these devices emits radiation. There has been much debate on whether this radiation from cell phones (and other devices) can cause cancer. Studies thus far have been done on adults so the concern is that if there is a link to cancer, children may be at great risk because they started using cell phones and other devices at an earlier age. “Cell phone use is now widespread even among younger children. It is possible that if there are health effects, they might be more pronounced in children because their bodies might be more sensitive to radiofrequency (RF) energy. Another concern is that children’s lifetime exposure to the energy from cell phones will be greater than adults’, who started using them at a later age” warns the American Cancer Society.

BioZen is a small sticker chip that attaches to all of your devices and is scientifically and medically proven to reduce the harmful effects of mobile radiation. BioZen was just named a Class 1 Medical Device and can be put on devices such as cell phones, baby monitors, Ipads, and computers.

I want to do everything in my power to protect myself and my family from these devices. Biozen never expires, and even if you trade your phone in every 2 years, the $50 you spend on Biozen comes out to $2 a month. To me, it is worth it.

Click here to purchase your Biozen. For any questions or further information, please email me at Jennifer.s.costa@gmail.com

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Enter the giveaway to win a FREE BioZen.

Choose one or more ways to enter:

1. Sign up for email notifications at Child Life Mommy and leave a comment below

2. Facebook: Follow Child Life Mommy, tag a friend and leave a comment on the post

3. Twitter: Follow, Like and RT the post to @ChildLifeMommy

4. Instagram: Follow @ChildLifeMommy, and @Jshep22, Like the post and tag a friend.

Good Luck! Winner will be chosen 6/14/18. Shipped to U.S. and Canada residents only.

Restoring Resilience in Teens: Spotlight on Shadow’s Edge

Restoring Resilience in Teens Spotlight on Shadow's Edge

Guest Blogger, Garth Sundem from Digging Deep

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Shadow’s Edge is the first FREE game designed to build resilience in teens with serious health conditions. In the game, teens 13+ are transported to the city of Shadow’s Edge where they have an opportunity to revive a city left dark and disrupted by a storm. It’s the players’ quest to find and write on journal pages and to express themselves by making graffiti. Through their self-expression, players bring vibrancy back to the city. Along the way, they have help — the Guardians of Disruption, Disillusionment and Discovery, who send players on missions to look inside themselves for answers to tough questions and discover wisdoms hidden in the city. As players heal the city, they heal themselves. And through in-game community, players can share their words and art with others, building camaraderie and understanding that they are not alone in their struggles. Reviving the city alone, teens can explore the issues surrounding their illness. Together, they can spread what they learn. At the end, they can look back to see how truly far they have come. That is Shadow’s Edge.

Learn more about the game at Digging Deep and Shadow’s Edge sites!

Related Articles:

Empowering Adolescents Through Journaling: Spotlight on Digging Deep