Six-year-old Devon is nervous about undergoing an upcoming procedure to remove a birthmark on his face. Since children take their cues from their parents or guardians, pediatrician Dr. Jim Sears says that setting the tone for the operation starts with the parents. "You need to be confident in the surgeon and the hospital," he says.
Showing your child where the surgery will take place and bringing toys that that he or she can play with, both before and after surgery, can help alleviate fears.
• Watch how Dr. Sears handles a tantrum.