We are normally accustomed to our children falling, bumping into things or injuring themselves. However, blows to the head are the injuries that most alarm parents due to the fragility of the area and since the child’s reaction and the physical consequences tend to be extremely apparent (bumps, bruises, cuts, etc.).
Clearly, we cannotalways prevent our children from having accidents, but it is important to know how to act to avoid any major scares.
Steps to take if your child hits his or her head hard.
The head is normally the body part children bump the most. In most cases, these blows are not important, but we must remain alert after a blow to the head since it is such a delicate part of the body.
When one of our little ones hits his or her head hard, it is normal for him or her to be disoriented and cry at first. This is the normal reaction.
If the contusion is mild, and in the event no other wounds or contusions appear on the rest of the body, parents or caregivers should monitor the child for 24 hours after the accident, but from home.
When these bumps occur at night and they are minor, the child can be left to sleep. When they are more severe, we recommend waking the child every 4 hours to determine his or her reaction and to check that he or she is okay. If your child appears normal after 24 hours, normal activities can be resumed.
When to go to the ER when your child hits his or her head.
Go to the emergency room in the event your child presents any of the following symptoms:
- Loss of consciousness.
- Disorientation, certain clumsiness and bewilderment, or if he or she has a diminished response to stimuli.
- Repeated vomiting.
- Abnormalities in the pupils.
Blow to the head with wound
When your child hits his or her head and there is blood, you must find the wound immediately.
Once you have found the cut, wash it with copious amounts of water, apply pressure to the wound using gauze or a cloth and apply ice wrapped in cloth to the wound.
Check for any foreign bodies and whether or not the wound is deep and needs stitches. In either case, we recommend going to the health clinic as soon as possible.
Lump on the head.
If a lump or egg appears on the head after the blow, it is best to ice the inflamed area.
With a doctor’s prescription, give the child an analgesic so both the pain, which is normal, and the lump subside.
If the lump elongates and becomes soft, go to a health clinic. You should also go to a clinic if the bruising and pain in the area do not subside.