If you have children, you are no stranger to life's little calamities. They come in the form of skinned knees, scraped elbows, and stubbed toes. Here are some guidelines to help you treat those little accidents and know when it is time to seek help.
If these injuries happen, get medical care right away:
Do not remove larger embedded objects, such as a knife or stick from a puncture wound. If you have any doubt, leave the object alone. They can be safely removed by a doctor.
Note: A child with a chronic condition, such as diabetes, should see a doctor right away if a wound is not healing well.
If you do not have a first aid kit in your home, you can put one together, or purchase from your local American Red Cross or drug store. It may be a good idea to have a first aid kit in your car as well.
Here is what the American Red Cross recommends having in your home's first-aid kit.
Here is what the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends having in your car's first-aid kit:
If you have a smartphone, consider downloading a first aid app from the American Red Cross. Features of the app include first aid instructions, ability to call for emergency medical help, and safety tips. You can even take quizzes and earn badges to increase your first aid knowledge.
Canadian Red Cross
Canada Safety Council
Anatomy of a first aid kit. American Red Cross website. Available at: http://www.redcross.org/prepare/location/home-family/get-kit/anatomy. Accessed October 30, 2013.
First aid: cuts, scrapes and stitches. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/prevention-wellness/staying-healthy/first-aid/first-aid-cuts-scrapes-and-stitches.html. Updated December 2010. Accessed October 30, 2013.
First aid guide. American Academy of Pediatrics Healthy Children website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/prevention-wellness/staying-healthy/first-aid/first-aid-cuts-scrapes-and-stitches.html. Updated August 7, 2013. Accessed October 30, 2013.
Laceration management. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us. Updated January 29, 2013. Accessed October 30, 2013.
Markenson D, Ferguson JD, et al. Part 17: first aid: 2010 American Heart Association and American Red Cross Guidelines for First Aid. Circulation. 2010;122(18 Suppl 3):S934-946.
Last reviewed October 2013 by Michael Woods, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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