How to Prevent Accidents With Children

There are countless strategies for preventing accidents with children in any number of circumstances they might encounter. Here are some precautionary steps to take that cover the most basic safety issues where children are concerned.

Steps

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    Keep children safe in the car.
    • Secure infants in rear-facing safety seats until they are at least a year old and 20 pounds. Once they are bigger, seat them in a forward-facing child safety seat.
    • Put kids who are 40 pounds or heavier in a booster seat until they are big enough to fit securely in the adult seat belt.
    • Stay focused while driving. Refraining from using a cell phone while driving will reduce the risk of an accident.
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    Stay informed about possible recalls of children's products.
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    Do not leave toys in your child's crib or bed when you or another caregiver is absent. Objects in a child's sleeping area increase the risk of choking and smothering.
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    Keep poisonous chemicals locked away where children cannot reach them.
    • Teach children about the chemicals in your home so they know the difference between a food product and a poison.
    • Do not store chemicals near food.
    • Know the phone number for poison control or keep it handy.
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    Ensure that there are no areas in your home that are painted with lead-based paint that is peeling away.
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    Keep your attention on your children at the playground.
    • Remove dangling accessories from children when they are on the playground. These include scarves, purses, necklaces and drawstrings for clothing.
    • Keep children younger than 5 in an area away from the bigger kids at a playground.
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    Practice water safety when your kids are near a pool.
    • Make sure your children can swim before getting in the water. If they cannot, ensure that they use proper flotation devices and stay with them the whole time.
    • Install fencing around a private swimming pool.
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    Keep kids safe on bicycles.
    • Children should always wear well-fitted helmets when riding bikes.
    • Make sure their bicycles are equipped with reflectors.
    • Though it depends on local laws, it is often safest to have children ride their bikes on the sidewalk.
    • A bike is too big if a child cannot sit on the seat and still be able to touch the floor with his feet.
    • Ensure that the bicycle is well tuned, with filled tires and functioning brakes and gear shifters.
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    Tell children to inform an adult if they are confronted by a bully. Fighting back is not a safe option.
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    Inform kids that they should not talk to strangers.
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    Keep guns in a locked safe if you own any. Also, teach your children about how dangerous firearms are.
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    Have children chew food thoroughly before swallowing. Taking smaller bites will also prevent choking.
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    Make sure children are safe during sporting activities.
    • Different sports require different precautions, so research the activity and equip them accordingly.
    • Teach children to warm up and stretch before playing a sport.
    • Take a child to a doctor for a physical before he or she starts a new sport.
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    Teach children to look both ways and obey traffic signals before crossing a street.
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    Have a plan for evacuating your home in case of an emergency and teach it to your children.
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    Keep smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms in your home. Test and make sure they are working regularly.
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    Learn CPR in case of an emergency.

Article Info

Categories: Childhood Health | Injury and Accidents