Don’t use physical restraint as a first choice during painful procedures in children

Type of practice

Other health practices

Topic Area


Often, to perform invasive procedures and/or to position devices, we resort to the physical restraint of the child, with insufficient explanation of what will happen, and without an appropriate analgesic coverage. Missing pain control and anxiety management generate rejection, crying, anguish, stress, non-compliance in the little patient and worry and anxiety in his/her parents. In addition to the well known conventional procedures, there are valid alternative methods, such as: comfortable position of the baby, controlled breathing, distraction and encouragement of mother and child, simulation of a story through puppets and, in particular, audiovisual techniques that better influence the cognitive-emotional component of pain. The use of local anesthetics such as lidocaine cream / patch / powder can be taken into account depending on the duration of the procedures. The pain and associated discomfort control for diagnostic / therapeutic procedures is effective in reducing the child’s reactions to painful events that should occur over time and can foster the acceptance of any other type of future care intervention.


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Attention. Please note that these items are provided only for information and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a clinician. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their clinician.