I attended a baby and child first aid course at the weekend. It was one of those things I had been meaning to do for a while so I was glad to finally do it! It was certainly helpful and I came away feeling a bit more prepared to deal with any unpleasant eventualities, should they occur. I expect many of you have also done a similar course but I thought it might be helpful to share a few things I learned or was told, that you might find useful. The instructor we had works at a big London hospital and had some anecdotal information from working there that was interesting to hear too.
• Most burns on children that they deal with at her hospital are caused by hot coffee or tea spillages. Whilst our skin can take the heat, theirs is that much more delicate that it can cause a more severe burn. She mentioned the coffee we all buy in coffee shops that's usually too hot to drink at first - that's what we need to look out for!
• With head injuries, it's usually a good sign if the child cries out after hitting their head. This was good to hear, as it seems once children start walking, they have so many falls and bangs to the head you are never sure when to be worried.
• If a child is choking, they won't be making a noise. If you can hear them gagging or making a noise in the back of their throat, that shows that the airway is still clear. If it's blocked by some food, they're not able to make a noise.
• When a young child sticks something up their nose, one way to get the object out is to close the other nostril, put your mouth over theirs and give one short, sharp breath into their mouth.
• In instances where CPR is done on a child, the success rate in getting them breathing again is fairly high and a lot higher than with adults. Even if we don't remember the exact number of breaths and chest compressions we are supposed to do, we were told that anything we do will likely help.
We all hope that we don't have any scary situations with our children, no severe injuries or accidents but you never know what might happen and it's good to be prepared.
What kinds of injuries have been most common with your children? Have you got any first aid tips to share?