Being a parent is full of joys and challenges. While you want your kids to have all the fun in the world, you also want to keep them safe. Unfortunately, accidents happen, and sometimes those accidents land kids in the emergency room. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, in 2017, almost 20% of the 144.8 million total ER visits in America involved an injury. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to help protect your kids from ER visits. Here are five tips for keeping your kids safe.
1. Teach Your Kids About Safety
One of the best ways to protect your kids is to teach them about safety. Show them how to look both ways before crossing the street and wear a helmet when riding a bike. Explain to them what poison ivy looks like and how to stay away from it. The more you educate your kids about safety, the more likely they are to stay safe.
2. Keep an Eye on Your Kids
It’s important to keep an eye on your kids, especially if they are playing outside. If you can’t be outside with them, make sure a responsible adult supervises them. Keep an eye on them when they are swimming as well. According to the CDC, drowning is the leading cause of death for children between one and four.
It’s also important to keep an eye on your kids when they are playing with toys. Make sure they are using age-appropriate toys and that they are using them correctly. If you have any questions about a toy, contact the manufacturer.
You should also keep an eye on your kids when they are using electronics. Make sure they are using them in a safe way and that they are not spending too much time on them.
3. Buy Them Protective Gear
If your kids are involved in activities that require protective gear, make sure you buy them the right gear. For example, if they are playing baseball, make sure they have a batting helmet and that it fits properly. If they are riding a bike, make sure they have a helmet and that it is fastened correctly.
You should also buy your kids a mouth guard regardless of what sport they are playing. Mouth guards can help protect their teeth from being knocked out or damaged. According to Sports Health, about 5 million teeth are chipped, cracked, or lost each year due to sports-related injuries. In addition to buying the right gear, you should also make sure your kids know how to use it properly. This is the only way to ensure that it will actually protect them.
4. Intervene Before an Injury Happens
Sometimes the best way to protect your kids is to intervene before an injury happens. For example, if you see your child about to touch a hot stove, intervene and stop them. If you see them playing with a toy that is inappropriate for their age, take it away.
Remember, injuries are not only painful for your child, but they can also take a long time to heal. For example, bone fractures can take up to 10 weeks to heal completely. During this time, your child will likely be in pain and may not be able to participate in their usual activities.
5. Child Proof Your Home
One of the best ways to protect your kids is to childproof your home. This means making sure that all potentially dangerous items are out of reach. For example, you should keep all cleaning products and chemicals in a locked cabinet. You should also install safety locks on all doors and windows. In addition to childproofing your home, you should also teach your kids about what they can and cannot touch.
As you can see, there are several ways you can protect your kids from injuries. Not only will this help keep them safe, but it will also give you peace of mind. If you have any questions about safety or if you want to learn more about keeping your kids safe, you can also contact your local pediatrician. They will be more than happy to help you and answer any of your questions.