Hospitals Are Using Lego MRI Scanners To Help Children Who Are Nervous
Hospitals are scary places for adults at the best of times, so for children, they are much worse.
And one of the most daunting tests a kid can undergo is an MRI scan - a big, loud machine which shows what's going on inside a patient's body.
But doctors have come up with a genius way of putting little ones at ease before heading into the examination room. They have built small models of the scanners which they use to explain exactly what is going on.
Pretty clever, right?
Parents seem to think so as they have taken to Twitter to share photos of the toys which come complete with little Lego figures.
Praising the trick, one person posted a pic with the caption: "LEGO MRI scanners which go to hospitals to help teach kids who are nervous about getting one how they work. Clever part, the MRI bit opens up on a hinge so you can see how it works inside."
Another mum, whose kid was a bit worried about her test, added: "My eldest daughter had to have quite a few full skeletal MRI's from the age of 6. They had a dedicated play team at The John Radcliffe that gave her this to play with.
"They also go through all the noises on an iPad so they don't come as a shock. Incredible."
Since the post was first shared, hundreds have piled into the comments with their own stories.
Some have even suggested that adults could benefit from using the models.
"Having had an MRI as an adult I think I'd still like all of this before having another one. What a great idea," wrote one.
A second commented: "This is brilliant! I had my fourth MRI yesterday and still get scared, I reckon this could help a fair few adults."
While another replied: "Indeed. Playing the different noises to kids (and adults). Had an MRI recently. The nurse/technician administering suggested I close my eyes and think of something pleasant. Good advice."
Other parents, keen to calm their child's nerves before a visit to the hospital, have made their own models at home.
Back in 2014, a Lego MRI scanner was donated to the Royal Berkshire Hospital.
A senior play specialist from the hospital said at the time that it was a 'brilliant' idea and helped young overcome their anxiety ahead of a scan.
Cancer patient Matthew Pike, who was 13 at the time, said the scanners were 'intimidating' and 'frightening', but that the model "works really well" to calm him down.
Featured Image Credit: PA