According to the World Report on Child Injury Prevention published by the World Health Organization and UNICEF, 2,000 children die every single day due to unintentional injuries. In addition, tens of millions of children require hospital care yearly, due to preventable injuries.
Thousands of families are destroyed because of these deaths, and many of the non-fatal injuries result in scars and permanent physical and mental disabilities. The most effective method of injury prevention is constant adult supervision. Children should never be left unattended, especially those under the age of seven. However, since accidents can occur within a few seconds, usually while an adult has stepped out of the room momentarily, it’s extremely important for your home to be childproof.
Kids home alone (photo: secretgiggle)
Childproofing basics include the following: Keep all medicines out of reach and sight of children. Laundry detergent capsules, which burst open once bitten, are especially hazardous, since many children mistake them for candy.
Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children (photo: adventuretofitness)
Parents must protect their kids from detergent capsules (photo: myilluminateblog)
Keep all sharp objects, including sharpened pencils, out of reach of children.
Place safety locks on all drawers and cupboards (though as your child gets older, they might easily remove them).
Secure televisions sets to the wall, since more and more children are dying every year due to household objects such as televisions and bookshelves falling on them.
Never leave any container with water inside within the reach of children. Young children can drown in just a few centimeters of water. Buckets are an often overlooked hazard since toddlers who can tip their heads over into them are not able to stand back up.
Never leave any container with water inside within the reach of children (photo: learnplayimagine)
Always check the water temperature and never leave a small child unattended in the bathroom, since hot water from the bathroom tap is a leading cause of burns.
Always check the water temperature and never leave a small child unattended in the bathroom (photo: safetytubs)
Keep all hot beverages as well as irons and curling irons out of reach and sight of children.
Remove all objects that contain button batteries from the reach of children. Once swallowed, these tiny batteries have detrimental effects, and can be fatal.
Even if all of the above-mentioned precautions are taken, injuries can still occur. This is why it is essential for all parents and caregivers to be aware of basic First Aid for infants and children. Taking a First Aid class can help you practice what you would do in case of an emergency. Keeping a First Aid kit with instructions with you at all times is also an important measure. Here are some First Aid basics that all parents should know: If a child is choking on an object, hit them firmly on the back, between the shoulder blades, up to five times.
If this does not dislodge the object, hold the child around the waist and pull upwards and inwards above the belly button. Do this up to five times.
It is important to note that you should never attempt to remove the object by placing your fingers inside the child’s mouth, since this can push it further down the throat. If a child suffers a burn, place the burned area under cold running water for at least ten minutes. Afterwards, apply a burn cream and wrap the area in clean cling film or a clean plastic bag. If the burn is severe, take the child to a hospital.
If a child is having a seizure (sudden jerking, eyes may roll back, child may become unconscious), do not attempt to restrain them. Never put anything in the child’s mouth during a seizure. Place the child on the floor in a safe place with a soft object under their head. Wait until the seizure is over and then take the child to a doctor. It is important to note the length of the seizure. If a child is unconscious and not breathing, tell someone to call an ambulance, and give the child five rescue breaths. Tilt their head back, seal your mouth over their mouth and pinch their nose. Blow five times into the child’s mouth. Give 30 chest compressions. Push firmly in the middle of their chest with one hand so the chest goes inward, then release. Repeat until help arrives.
Being aware of the hazards surrounding children inside the home, childproofing as much as possible, and learning the basics of First Aid can help save your child’s life.