|Home | Issues | The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 41, Tuesday April 19, 2005|
No more tears over cuts and bruises
As children we had all undergone some sort of serious injury. While some of us accidentally inserted our fingers into the electric sockets, others have fallen down the stairs. Still others have almost chopped off a finger while playing with scissors. The list of incidents continue… However, parents must always stay alert about their children's cuts and bruises; a minor injury can turn into a major crisis if not immediately attended to. Let us take a look at how parents should take care of their children's wounds.
In our country, kids often get dangerous cuts when they are sometimes left unattended at home. If left alone at home, most kids tend to play with sharp objects like scissors and knives and get into serious injury. A cut should be taken care of right away.
First of all, put pressure on the wound for around 5 to 6 minutes to stop the bleeding. If the cut is serious and your child loses consciousness then call an ambulance without delay. Always keep a list of emergency telephone numbers on your phonebook.
As soon as the bleeding stops, take your next move. Clean the wound with a good anti-bacterial soap and water. Anti-bacterial soaps are even locally made these days. You can opt for quality anti-bacterial soap like Dettol. If possible, then wash the wound under a running tap. If that does not become possible then use a soft cotton washcloth to clean the area with soap and water.
Once you are done with washing the wound apply antiseptic cream and a bandage. Ointments for minor cuts and injuries are widely available in drugstores that you can buy without a doctor's prescription.
Apply the ointment and then cover the area with a sterile bandage as this would prevent your child from touching the wound and getting hurt while playing again.
Remember to reapply the ointment and change the dressing whenever the bandage gets wet or unclean; this should be done at least once every day. Doctors recommend that you should keep the bandage for at least two days and check for signs of infection, which are usually redness, increased pain, swelling and pus. Remember that it might take as long as 12 to 14 days to heal a wound, so stay cool.
Children often get cuts while playing. Body protection is therefore necessary when kids play. Make sure that your child wears the protective equipment for the sports he/she takes part in. Cricket is now definitely the 'in' sport of the country; if he's into cricket then buy pads and helmets for him and encourage him to use them.
When your child gets a burn the first thing you must do is wash the affected area with cool, running water for around 10 minutes. Don't stop the process even to take off his/her clothes. Put your child under water with his clothes and everything. After washing, cover the area with a towel soaked in cold water and keep it until the pain ceases.
In case of a major burn (if the burn is larger than the size of the child's palm) injury, don't apply cold water and ice to reduce pain as ice will damage the tender skin of your child. In case of a major injury, call for an ambulance immediately. Keep the affected area covered with a towel soaked in cold water. Later on, remove the wet towel and cover the area with a dry, clean sheet. Many mothers tend to break the blisters created from burns. Never do this. It's risky and it might leave life-long scars on your child.
Bruises and Scrapes
For minor bruises, rubbing ice on the affected area is enough. However, for scrapes, rinse the area with water for several minutes. Then wash the area with an anti-bacterial soap and clean water. And lastly, apply an antiseptic cream for quick relief.
If your child's tooth is knocked off, gain a little courage to pick the tooth by the chewing end, not the root, and clean it gently by stirring it in some cold milk. Then reinsert the tooth into the socket. If you are unable to reinsert it, then keep the tooth in a glass of cool milk and take your child to the hospital for medical help. Remember to place sterile gauze in the place where the tooth was and ask your child to bite down.
In case of a broken tooth, clean the child's mouth gently with warm water and then apply cold compress or ice pack. Take your child to the doctor.
If any chemical enters your child's eyes, flush the eyes from the bridge of the nose to the outer edge of the eyes for at least 15 minutes. Take your child to the hospital by covering his/her eyes with eye pads and sterilised gauze.
No injury or wound on your child should be left unattended. All over the world, many a children become crippled for life every year because of lack of proper care after an injury. Instead of scolding your child, try to understand that they have the right to play at this age. Their inquisitive mind often pushes them to touch and operate dangerous objects but then it's your duty to teach them what to do and what not to. Instead of being harsh to your child when he/she is hurt, be patient and take instant care of his/her injury.
By Wara Karim
By Sherifa Ahmed
Fresh Fruit Salad
Beat eggs and sugar until eggs are lemon coloured and fluffy. Melt butter and cocoa over a pan of simmering water until cocoa and butter form a paste. Let it cool. Mix the cocoa mixture into the beaten eggs and gradually beat in the flour, vanilla essence and walnuts. Pour the mixture into the pan bake in the centre of the oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Cool and cut into 2" (5 cm) squares.
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