While it is true that childhood leukemia is a horrific thing for any parent to have to deal with; it is equally as bewildering and painful for the child, who looks to their parents to offer guidance and solace. There are ways in which a parent can help:
- Explain as much to the child about the disease as may be age appropriate, while being as matter of fact but comforting as you can.
- Get adequate information about it yourself so that you know what best to do when a course of action has to be decided.
- Do not restrict activities unnecessarily. Speak to the doctor about what is allowed and what is not; and keep to those guidelines. Being extra protective or placing restrictions on the child’s activities will not really help.
- Speak to a counselor about tools to help a child come to terms with their condition. Acting out fears and apprehensions may be beneficial.
- See what support groups and forums you can join. It is important for the child to understand that he is not alone and that many others are going through what they are.
- Plan meals and beverages carefully to make them palatable and appropriate. If the child is undergoing chemo, they may require special care and nutrition.
- Fun head gear will help combat the embarrassment of hair loss.