Hey guys. This is one of the most important posts we will ever write about. Today we are going to talk about emergency safety tips for your child, how to handle any accidents that happen in your home. We discussed the most common hazards with Dr. R, a medical practitioner with over 20 years of experience in Public Health, who has consulted in different countries. lectured and is very well-versed in how our hospitals in Nigeria work. Please, let’s dive in together!
“My toddler decided to monkey-jump off the bed and fell! What do I do?”
Dr. R: “I’ve seen several falls and they’re usually nothing to worry about, unless it’s from a balconey. So nothing, as long as there’s no bleeding, cut or swelling and the child doesn’t appear concussed (passes out briefly). Get an ice pack or wrap something from your freezer into a cloth and apply to the swelling. And no more jumping.”
“My One-Year old grabbed my medicine from my bag and chewed it! Now what?”
Dr. R: “Firstly, medicine SHOULD be kept away from kids (preferably in a plastic box on top of a high shelf in a cupboard). Having said that, if your child swallows medicine, the most important thing to do is check the name of the medicine and the amount taken, as that is vital to starting treatment. For most Over-The-Counter drugs (Paracetamol, Vitamins etc), if they took a small quantity, there should be no worries. Give the child plenty of water to aid excretion of PCM from the body fast. But if your toddler took a large dose of a serious medicine, please head to the hospital. Try to carry what is left of the drugs they swallowed, as the chances are you may not be in the right frame of mind to recall what they took and how many (just grab everything and go). That will help the Dr decide what treatment to give your child.
“My 2 year old and I were munching Groundnuts together and she put one up her nose! Osolobua!”
Dr. R: “Groundnuts are very bad as they absorb moisture, swell up, increase their size and make the nasal obstruction bad. The same will happen in the Ear. I advise you not to put any fingers up the nose or ear as that will only push the lodged Groundnut seed even further in. DO NOT PINCH OR BLOW INTO THE NOSE. Inorganic objects (like crayons) are easier to handle but once you can’t see the object when you look into the nose or ear, it’s time to go to the hospital.”
“My child has this battery-operated toy, I found it scattered and my child looking sick. No batteries in sight”
Dr. R: “If your child swallows a battery, you should be worried. Batteries have acid in them and it may leak in the stomach. So yes, to the hospital. If the battery is up their nose, to their hospital faster. If you were sewing and your child swallowed a button, it will be pooed out in about 2 days, so no worries.”
“In trying to fumigate the house, we left Sniper lying around. My child drank some!”
Dr. R: “For any type of liquid swallowed (Bleach, Detergent, Sniper etc), identify it and the amount you think they swallowed. DO NOT FORCE THE CHILD TO VOMIT as they can aspirate into their lungs (choke and die). There are antidotes in the hospital so go there ASAP.”
“I heard if my child drinks Bleach, I should give him Palm Oil or Milk to drink”
Dr. R: “Old Wives’ Tale and a very dangerous one too! I’ve seen it spread over Whatsapp. It’s wrong. Milk increases volume and makes the child feel nauseous and want to vomit. You DO NOT want them vomitting because it WILL aspirate into the lungs and Sniper or Bleach in the lungs or the throat is 100 times worse than in the stomach. Trust me. I’ve had to handle far too many sad examples of this, so parents should learn.”
Please take the time to read this and spread the word to everyone. And we would like to thank Dr. R for his time and he will definitely be back on the blog.
Thanks and take care.