Injuries of all sorts are the number one cause of death in young children. In fact, injuries alone are responsible for more deaths than the sum of all other causes. For every person that succumbs to his injuries, 40 others are admitted into a hospital and 1300 individuals are sent to the emergency room.
Being well prepared for all types of emergencies is the key to success when it comes to your child’s well-being and security.
The best way to reduce the risk of accidents and injuries for your family is to identify the potential risks surrounding your loved ones.
Getting prepared for emergencies
The majority of accidents occur at home. Therefore, you can get ready for all kinds of emergencies by taking a few precautions:
- Make an emergency list and keep it in a convenient place. For example, you can stick the list to your refrigerator and keep a copy in the glove compartment of your car.
- Keep your children’s health books updated.
- Keep a first Aid kit handy at home and in the car. Make sure you also have a safety kit when leaving the house to play sports.
- Make sure to regularly replace overdue or used healthcare items.
- All family members suffering from a medical condition (diabetes, epilepsy, cardiac disease or severe allergies) should wear a bracelet or pendant to illustrate their medical problem.
- Make sure to update your first-aid knowledge every once in a while. The advice given on this site is useful; however, it does not replace, in any way, a first aid training course. If possible, make sure that each person responsible for your child does the same.
Preventive measures to take at home
- Make sure that every room in the house is equipped with proper fire and carbon dioxide detectors. If your detectors are electric, make sure you have batteries in case the electricity runs out. Lastly, make sure you replace the batteries regularly.
- Use electric socket covers.
- Do not leave anything sharp or small objects near children (safety pins, buttons, sewing needles or food) to prevent them from swallowing it.
- Apply stickers or pictures on glass doors to prevent your little one from accidentally bumping into it.
- Remove any heavy or sharp object such as vases, frames or lamps. This will prevent your child from grasping onto these objects and falling.
- Remove tablecloths to prevent your little one from pulling onto it.
- Use a stair gate at the bottom and top of the stairs.
- Make sure your windows are safe in order to stop your child from climbing on it.
- Make sure your mosquito screen is in good state and avoid placing furniture in front of a window since it increases its accessibility.
- Tie your curtains, draperies or cords from your window blinds to keep them out of your little one’s reach, thereby reducing the risk of suffocating.
- Keep plastic bags out of your children’s reach.
- Use non-toxic and lead free paint in and around the house.
- Keep all hazardous substances such as cleaning or gardening products and paint in a safe place that is difficult to access for a child.
- Make sure to use a barrier of some sort to limit accessibility to fireplaces.
- If you are working around the house, make sure your tools are kept out of your children’s reach.
- Make sure that any containers with paint, dyes or varnish are properly shut after being used. Also verify that nails, screws, dust or any construction material residue has been properly cleaned up and put away.
- When you must use an extremely toxic product, do not let the product out of your sight! If you have to leave the room to answer the phone or the door, bring the product with you.
- Keep lighters and matches away from your children.
- Call your province’s Poison Control Center to obtain detailed documents on how to prevent poisoning.
- Fix your water-heater’s temperature at 140°F. Water can cause third degree burns in seconds, three minutes with water at 120°F. These minutes could make all the difference!