Six Things to Do When a Pediatric Emergency Occurs

Six Things to Do When a Pediatric Emergency Occurs

Feb 01, 2020

On average parents with children aged three to seven visit the ER at least 25 times with emergencies like broken bones, burns, cuts, difficulty breathing, and fever. Most of these conditions are mild, but others may require emergency treatment. Regardless of how the injury or disease occurs, knowing what to do at any given situation can prevent complications.

Keep in mind, children and adults are different and thereby react to emergencies differently, so don’t handle the pediatric emergencies as you would the adult ones. Here are six things you can do when an emergency occurs.

1. Decide Where to Go

There is urgent care and emergency room and both cater to different needs. Urgent care handles minor injuries and diseases that are not life-threatening. Emergency rooms, on the other hand, are for fatal and serious diseases such as severe bleeding and trauma.

ER is not a first-come, first-served place, they deal with diseases according to the severity. Although pediatric emergencies are given priority, visiting an ER for minor health problems isn’t advisable.

Additionally, choose to visit an ER for kids because they are fully equipped to handle pediatric emergencies and have a pleasant environment. Some hospitals don’t have pediatric ER meaning, they neither have the specialists nor child-friendly medical equipment.

2. Keep Calm

Remain calm and try to minimize anxiety in your child so that they can be more cooperative. If possible, carry crayons, toys, games, and books to keep them entertained.

Communicate with your child promptly about what is happening and what the doctor will do.

3. Get All the Necessary Information

We recommend you have all the necessary information about the child such as medical and drug history, allergies if any, vaccination history, and insurance. Additionally, have contact information for your pediatrician and pharmacy.

The doctor may also ask information related to what the child ate in the past 24 hours, the number of fluids and bowel movement. Communicate effectively with the medical team giving the chronological events before the emergency occurred.

4. Perform First-Aid

Depending on the type of wounds, first aid may work great. Follow the doctor’s instructions when performing first aid to avoid any further complications. Also, treat the child at home first to minimize the symptoms. It is okay to give medication but first speak to the pediatrician. Other tips include:

  • Start CPR if the baby is unresponsive
  • Don’t feed them
  • Apply pressure on the wound if there is bleeding
  • Don’t move the child if they are injured or leave them alone until help arrives

5. Create Comfort

Carry comfortable items such as blankets, sweaters, pajamas, socks, and toothbrushes in case you spend the night at the hospital.

Although it may be tempting to give your child food, don’t until the cause of the emergency is confirmed or doctor gives you a go-ahead.

6. Make A Plan of Action

Being prepared will make all the difference in how well your child copes. We encourage new parents to educate themselves in advance on the different pediatric emergencies that may occur in children. Schedule an appointment with your pediatrician to discuss the development phases of childhood and common emergencies such as burns, cuts, difficulty breathing, broken bones and febrile seizures.

Yes, every child is different, but the management of these common emergencies is standard and having the correct information will come in handy.

What to Expect at the Emergency Room?

Soon after arriving, the child will be taken to the triage for assessment. Make sure you write down all the necessary information you hear. After the child is discharged, make a follow-up appointment with your pediatrician.

There’s no telling how long you will be at the ER as sometimes it may be overcrowded. Plus, as aforementioned, the doctors treat conditions depending on their seriousness, so be prepared for anything.

If the symptoms are minor, urgent care may be suitable, but don’t hesitate to seek emergency services if the situation calls for it. At Express ER, Temple, we offer 24-hour pediatric urgent care and emergency services, so contact us for assistance.

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