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Here’s how storytelling can reduce pain and stress in hospitalized children:




Children in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) experienced physiological and emotional benefits after participating in a storytelling study-suggesting new discoveries. the study..

The study was published in the minutes of the National Academy of Sciences, the official scientific journal of the National Academy of Sciences.

This was done by the Doll Institute (IDOR) and the Federal University of ABC (UFABC). The study was led by Guilherme Brockington of UFABC, PhD and Jorge Moll of IDOR, MD and PhD.

“During the storytelling, something we call” transporting the story “occurs. Through fantasy, a child can experience the sensations and thoughts of transporting him or her to another world that is different from the hospital room and therefore far away. “Aversion to hospitalization,” asserted Dr. Guilherme Brockington, and the lead author of the study.

Storytelling is an ancient practice of mankind. Legends, religions, and social values ​​have spread over thousands of years through oral and writing. The latest best-selling movie scripts and novels captivate the audience through the same mechanism. Listening to good stories moves from one reality to another.

This imaginative movement can create empathy for events and characters that fluctuate according to individual interpretations.

“In the past, positive evidence of storytelling was based on’common sense’and was taken at face value that interacting with children could divert, entertain, and alleviate psychological distress. But especially with regard to the underlying physiological mechanisms, “Dr. Mohr explained.

Considering the psychological and biological processes that occur during and after listening to the story, researchers consider the idea of ​​looking for scientific evidence of the effect of the story on critically hospitalized children. I came up with it.

A total of 81 children were selected and between the ages of 2 and 7 showed similar clinical symptoms, including respiratory problems caused by asthma, bronchitis, or pneumonia.

The children were admitted to the ICU of the Rede D’Or Sao Luiz Jabaquara Hospital in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and were randomly divided into two groups. Forty-one of them joined a group where storytellers read children’s stories for 25-30 minutes. In the control group, 40 children were informed of a mystery provided by the same expert during the same period.

To compare the effects of the two interventions, saliva samples were taken from each participant before and after each session and the vibrations of the stress and empathy hormones cortisol and oxytocin were analyzed, respectively.

In addition, the children underwent a subjective test to assess the level of pain they felt before and after participating in the activity. We also performed a freeword association task by associating impressions about the seven cards shown in the hospital context (nurse, doctor, hospital, medicine, patient, pain, book) elements.

According to the children’s own assessment, both interventions reduced cortisol levels and increased oxytocin production in all the children analyzed, while also reducing the sensations of pain and discomfort, resulting in results. All groups were positive.

But the big difference was that the positive results of the children in the storytelling group were twice as good as those in the riddle group. With these findings, researchers conclude that narrative activity is substantially more effective.

“Another highlight of this study was that it was done within the pediatric ICU routine, not in an artificial environment. Storytelling was done individually and the child chose which story to tell. We chose a title from the books provided. It is available in regular bookstores without any pre-defined emotional bias so that the story does not significantly affect the child’s reaction after activity. ” Dr. Blockington emphasized.

Storytelling has already been adopted in many children’s hospitals, but this is the first time that solid evidence of its physiological and psychological effects has been presented. This contributes to seeing this activity as an effective and low-cost treatment and can make a big difference in the quality of life of children in the intensive care unit.

“This study is the most important one I have participated in because of its simplicity, rigor, and potential for direct impact on practice in a hospital environment aimed at reducing human distress. I think it’s one. Because of its low cost, if large-scale research confirms reproducibility and effectiveness, it may be possible to implement secure interventions throughout the public system. Other settings and Expanded and replicated in patient groups, storytelling now has more solid scientific evidence, “Dr. Mohr pointed out.

The emotional impact of storytelling was also evident in the results of the freeword associative test conducted at the end of each intervention. Children in the storytelling group reported more positive emotions than the control group when exposed to the words of hospitals, nurses, and doctors.

For example, children in the control group replied to the card in a hospital picture, “This is where people go when they are ill.” Children in the storytelling group reported on the same card, “This is the place people go to get better.”

The same pattern was seen in the illustrations of nurses and doctors. The children in the control group said, “This is a bad woman who comes to give me an injection,” but those who spoke said phrases such as “This is a woman who comes to heal me.” I did.

The study was backed by a volunteer storytelling trained by the Brazilian nonprofit Viva e Deixe Viver, but the authors found that storytelling is an activity that parents and educators can practice equally. It states that it will provide a space for children to participate. Interact with book selection and stories.

Not only can you reduce anxiety and stress, but you can also strengthen the bond between your child, narrator, and others in the environment.

The authors also stated that the results of this study on storytelling represent additional potential applications for children experiencing environmental stress, such as the turmoil caused by pandemics.

Storytelling by parents, relatives and friends is an easy and effective way to improve a child’s well-being and is available to all families.

This story was published from a news agency feed without changing the text. Only the heading has changed.


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