Whether it’s little league baseball or conquering the jungle gym, it seems like your kid can tackle anything. While it’s uncomfortable to think about, accidents can and do happen. When your child suffers a broken bone, it’s important that you take careful and immediate action to ensure the injury is protected so that it can heal properly.
Identifying a Break
Kids lack the coordination and responsible attitude towards risk that comes with age, so bumps and bruises are inevitable. Identifying a more serious injury like a fractured bone can be difficult, but there are a few bone fracture signs to look out for. The three most obvious indications are pain, bruising or swelling to the injured area, and the appearance of a bump or change in shape to the impacted area of the limb. Pain will occur should your child attempt to move or bear weight on the injured area. If your child heard a grinding, cracking or snapping noise, that is also a fairly good indication that they have broken a bone.
While it’s up to your doctor to set the bone and apply the cast, there are some things parents should do immediately after a break. For serious injuries where the bone has broken through the skin or your child may have injured the bones in the back or neck, call 911 immediately and have your child avoid moving in any way. Apply pressure with clean gauze to the area where the bone has broken through the skin, but do not attempt to clean the wound or to reinsert the exposed bone.
Do not allow your child to eat until seeing a doctor as they may need surgery, which requires an empty stomach. For less serious fractures, use a cold compress to help alleviate pain and combat swelling until you can reach the hospital. You may also make a simple splint to keep the injured limb in the same position as you found it, as this can prevent further injury.
Preventing Future Injuries
Kids can be reckless, but sometimes injuries can be caused by the negligence of others. Whether from faulty playground equipment, dangerously unstable shelving in a store, or other accidents waiting to happen, it’s important that you take legal action in these cases to not only help cover the inevitable medical bills but to also prevent the same accident from occurring to other children.
To determine if negligence of another is to blame, schedule a meeting with a personal injury attorney from a firm like Wall Wall & Frauenhofer LLP to evaluate your potential case. Keep a careful record of any X-rays and other information pertinent to the incident. If it occurred on faulty playground equipment or another poorly maintained facility, consider taking photographs to further supplement the information you provide to your attorney.
As with other medical emergencies, when it comes to broken bones, time is of the essence. The sooner you can get your child to emergency services, the better. Likewise, when determining if another’s negligence played a role in your child’s injury, it’s better to act quickly while the details of the event are still fresh and evidence readily available.