How To Protect Children From A Serious Head Injury
85% of head injury admissions in hospitals are minor, yet around half of these are children. One child a week will sustain a serious head injury, which could cause life-long issues in development and behaviour, similarly, a child receives a brain injury every half an hour.
Such statistics are startling; however, there are many ways to reduce the risk in your home for your children.
The Common Causes
The most common causes of head injuries in children are falls. Falls, bumps and tumbles are intrinsic to childhood, and literally wrapping your child in cotton wool is not the answer. However, research has shown that there are particular falls which are injuring children more commonly.
The most common falls in children are falls from:
- playground equipment
At least one of these falls has probably affected every child, but depending on the situation, the severity can vary greatly. Some playground accidents result in little more than a bumped head and a few tears, unfortunately though, some end up much more serious, especially if falling onto concrete or from a height.
What You Can Do
Of course it isn’t realistic to avoid accidents completely, but there are a few things you can do to ensure you minimise the risk of potentially fatal or life-changing accidents happening.
For starters, child proofing your home is the first port of call, as well as ensuring others’ homes are similarly child-proof when you visit. A key point to remember is to ensure that children can’t get onto windowsills from either the bed or by clambering onto furniture to get to windows.
Household activities such as DIY, or even cleaning, should only be done when the child is outside the house, leaving you to get on with tasks that need doing without worrying what your child is up to. Kids are all too quick at finding objects and figuring out what they can and can’t do, leaving them at greater risk of serious injury.
Of course, children should always wear a helmet when cycling, skating or playing on scooters. A helmet will go a long way in reducing the risk of serious head injuries, and alongside knee and elbow protection, will reduce those nasty bumps and scrapes all together.
Last but by no means least is ensuring your child is in the right car seat for their age and size, and to amend or replace as and when required to make sure their as safe as possible on the road. Kids grow incredibly quickly, so it’s absolutely key that you ensure your child has an appropraitely sized seat to offer full protection. If in doubt, you can always find resources online to help you determine of your child has the correct size seat.
- Really?: The Claim: Cycling Is the Top Sport for Head Injuries (well.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Can I Collect Workers’ Compensation for Traumatic Brain Injury? (ankinlaw.com)
- Homicide investigation into baby’s death (stuff.co.nz)
- Spinal fractures a common injury after Asiana plane crash (nbcnews.com)