First Aid – Dealing with Minor Childhood Injuries

Any parent would want that no harm should ever come to their child but this is not possible and children will fall and trip and get cuts and bumps and will cause worry for their hapless parents.

As you and I grew up with scraped knees and bruises in unlikely places, minor injuries are a sort of rites of passage of the growing up years, no matter how much protective gear parents gather around.

First-AidSo read on to see what to do with minor injuries that your children will inevitably have –

Cuts and bruises

For cuts, lacerations and scratches, first clean the area with soap and water, then apply an antibacterial agent such as a powder, cream or spray to disinfect the area.

Cover with sterile gauze or just a band aid. If the bleeding is profuse or doesn’t stop you should see a doctor for the wound may need stitches.

For bruises the bleeding is below the skin so rather than clean the area you want to stop the swelling. Make a cold compress with a towel and some ice and apply the ice pack; keep the area elevated. If there is swelling around a bruise, particularly a joint this could mean damage to nerves, bone or tendon and medical attention may be required.

Burns

The first thing to do with a burn or scalded skin is to cool it down. The affected area should be kept in cool running water or immersed into water to cook the skin. Remember don’t use very cold water or ice. Put an antibiotic over the burn area and cover with soft, loose, sterile gauze.

Give the child a pain reliever to make them comfortable. If the infection develops or for large or severe burns consult a doctor so that more damage and possible scarring can be avoided.

Bites and stings

Stings from mosquitoes, spiders and ticks may not require too much attention save preventing further stings and perhaps a salve for the irritated skin to prevent itching.

Other stings from wasps, bees, hornets and so on are more painful and may need attention. Firstly make sure there is no chance of being stung again and remover the sting from the skin so that no more poison enters the skin.

Take an antihistamine to control allergic symptoms. Apply calamine, baking soda paste or a hydrocortisone cream to the area. Look out for severe allergic reactions to such stings such as swelling of lips or throat, difficulty breathing and so on which can be potentially fatal.

For any animal bite specially one that has punctured the skin immediate medical attention is a must.

Swallowing something harmful or poisonous

Needless to say any kind of poisoning or even suspected poisoning should receive immediate medical attention. However what a parent can do immediately is to make sure that the child’s airways and mouth are clear of the substance and there is no chance of ingesting any more. If the child throws up again make sure that the airways are clear to avoid choking.

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