Getting hurt is part of being a kid and growing up. As a parent, you try to do everything in your power to protect them from any hurt, harm, or danger but the reality is that you’re not going to be able to do that all the time. That can be a tough pill to swallow as a parent but it’s the truth.
The CDC states that unintentional injuries are the leading cause of death among children in the US. Things like drowning, falls, burns, and car accidents all are injuries that can be fatal for young children. Now, the good thing about that mortifying fact is that these unintentional injuries are preventable. When it comes to injury prevention, as a parent, you have to look at it from two perspectives:
Preparation: This is speaking from an at-home point of view, being that most unintentional injuries happen at home. As a parent, you want to make sure that your home is a safe place for your child to be and to play. Childproofing your home is a great start.
Supervision: When your child is playing whether at home or in the park, you need to give your full attention to them. Distractions like the phone or computer need to be eliminated because the slightest head turn can result in serious injuries.
Of course, accidents are bound to happen but with preparation and supervision, knowing the most common types of injuries is what’s going to best help you childproof your home and help you know what exactly to look out for when supervising. Take a look at the top causes of injuries among young children and the best ways to prevent them.
It’s a known fact that every time you set foot in a motor vehicle you are putting your life at risk, including your children’s life too. Toting them from playdates to them just tagging along while you run errands is a risk that parents take every day. According to the National Institutes of Health, car accidents are the number one cause of death and their the reason why nearly 150 children make emergency room visits too.
Prevention: Make sure your baby is secured in the right-sized car seat according to their height and weight. For bigger kids, make sure your child stays seated in the back seat no matter how much they beg to sit in the front with you. In fact, once they’ve outgrown their car seat, they need to remain in a booster seat until the seatbelt fits them properly, which is around the age of seven or eight.
Suffocation has to be every parent’s worst nightmare… finding your baby unresponsive. It’s something you don’t want to think about but it’s the key to keeping your baby alive. Babies are more likely to suffocate while they’re sleeping and the more you do to protect them in their surroundings the higher chance your baby will have at being able to breathe.
Prevention: For one, your baby’s crib is where suffocation accidents take place. The crib should be free from toys, pillows, and puffy blankets… they’re just too unsafe for babies. A baby’s crib ultimately only needs a fitted sheet on the blanket and maybe a receiving blanket. Also, your baby needs to sleep on their back and in their own bed. Did you know that 130 babies die each year from parents putting them in the bed with them?
The statistics for drowning in the US are heartbreaking. Three children die each day from drowning accidents and it’s typically because the child was left unattended in a pool area or area where there is a large body of water, whether it’s a lake or creek. A small child can drown is two inches of water, so imagine the magnitude of a pool.
Prevention: If your child is in a pool or body of water, you need to be within arm’s reach of them. Also, get your child enrolled in swim lessons as early as you can so they can learn the breathing techniques in case an accident happens, they’ll instinctively know what to do.
Did you know that most parents tend to worry about their child drowning in pools but children more commonly drown in the bathroom of their own home, whether in the bathtub or from getting into the toilet? Toilet seat locks and supervising a child while taking a bath are the best ways to prevent this from happening.
Paying Homage to the Doctors That Help in Emergency Situations
All of these unintentional injuries are the causes of death in babies and toddlers but knowing how to prevent them is what’s key here. One thing that a lot of people don’t know is that enduring these traumatic experiences is the very thing that pushes some people to practice medicine.
You hear all the time how doctors practice a certain are of medicine because of losing a loved one to a certain disease but that’s not always the drive for physicians. Sometimes their ability to handle emergency situations is what makes them look for emergency medicine positions. You have to be a quick thinker in these types of situations
It’s emergency physicians that teach parents the skills they need when these types of emergencies happen… it’s ultimately what saves their child’s life.