Children's Dangers

Sources: Papers On Health

Avoidance of the causes of disease requires some

idea of the dangers to which children are exposed in the usual

upbringing. For instance, sitting on damp ground, cold stones, or even

a cool window-sill, is a fruitful cause of bowel trouble. The remedy

for such an exposure is proper warm FOMENTATION (see) of the chilled

parts, followed by hot olive oil rubbing and careful clothing.

Again, rich diet, especially for delicate children, is a great cause

of trouble. What we have written concerning food, and the article

Assimilation, should be read to guide on this.

Again, the child is exposed to falls, and falls into water, leading

sometimes to drowning. Timely thought would prevent nearly all such

accidents. Do not wait until the trouble comes. Protect exposed streams

and wells near the house. Shut doors and gates in time. Also the

directions of the Humane Society for the recovery of the partly drowned

(see Drowning) should be in every house, and as soon as possible both

boys and girls should learn to swim.

Again, children are in danger through careless attendants. They may be

let fall, or capsized in perambulators. Spinal injury is often caused

by such falls. In case of any broken or disjointed limbs, the bandaging

of infants should be of a gentle kind, and encasement in starch or

plaster jackets should be avoided. In every way the natural growth and

circulation should be helped, not hindered by strapping and tight

bandaging. The timely consulting of a really good doctor will often

prevent serious trouble in any case of a fall.

Another source of danger is the exposure of children to the possibility

of burning or scalding. Wherever there are young children fires should

be guarded, and matters so arranged that they cannot come in the way of

boiling water. Much that seems impossible in such protection becomes

easy enough to a determined person, and a great deal of sore illness

can be averted by taking a little trouble. A child should never be in

the place where there is a pan of boiling water on the floor, nor in

any house should it be possible for a child to pull a kettle full of

boiling water on its head.

If, however, scalding occur, apply the cold treatment as detailed in

the article on Burns.

In case of contracted limbs or features, occurring from severe burning,

the rubbing treatment (see Children's Healthy Growth), will be

effective as a cure.

Children's clothing should never be made of flannelette, it is so

liable to take fire if the child approaches the grate. At hundreds of

inquests coroners have directed attention to the terrible loss of life

from this cause.

Medicines and all poisonous substances should be carefully labelled,

and kept out of children's reach. If by accident a child should have

taken poison administer an antidote (see Poisoning). Should a child

swallow a nail, button or some such hard substance, do not give any

purgative medicine. It will pass out more safely when embedded in solid

faeces. Examine the stools carefully so that anxiety may be allayed when

the foreign substance is seen.