It’s easy to get overwhelmed by advice and horror stories from other parents: “Cameron fell off his scooter and broke his arm” or “Be careful at the beach…Olivia got stung twice by jellyfish and we had to take her to the ER.” 25.5 million children between the ages of 0 and 17 visit the ER every year. That’s a scary statistic, so as a parent of energetic kids, you’d probably rather be asking what you can do to prevent a nerve-wracking ER visit instead of asking where the nearest hospital or emergency clinic is.

Before you decide to lock up the kids in a paranoid frenzy, let’s learn about the common pitfalls that land tots and teens in the ER. There are precautions that you can take to prevent more accident-related trips to the emergency room. Since it’s summertime, let’s hear what an ER doctor has to say about risks and precautions of playing outside and by the pool:

Drowning is the 2nd Leading Cause of Injury Related Deaths in Kids 19 and Under

According to the CDC, one of five people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger. For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency care for nonfatal submersion injuries. Most drowning accidents occur in a child’s own backyard pool or at a friend’s house.

Doctor’s Orders: When you attend a pool get-together, avoid getting distracted from supervising your kids. If parents want to mingle, plan a tag team strategy to ensure someone is always watching the kids and the pool activity. If you have a pool, build a reliable fence with gates that can be locked and automatically shut behind you. However, your fence shouldn’t be your only deterrent. Parents should always keep a close eye on their children, especially non-swimmers. Take CPR classes and get your kids into swimming classes as added precautions.

Slips and Falls Account for 90% of Emergency Room Visits

That huge percentage should tell you that ER docs have seen their fair share of broken elbows, broken arms, and even broken clavicles. One guilty culprit? Playgrounds.

Doctor’s orders: Make sure your children play on age-appropriate equipment. Toddlers and young children exploring the jungle gym ladder or monkey bars unsupervised will likely land themselves straight into a hospital or the emergency room . When you bring your child to a playground or decide to build your own, make sure the landing area is reinforced with rubber or wood chips for a safe landing. Most importantly, keep a close watch on your kids at all times.

Wet feet and slippery surfaces make dangerous poolside falls too common for comfort. When it comes to pool play, enforce rules that prevent slips and injuries.

  1. Walk – don’t run.
  2. No jumping or diving in shallow water.
  3. Keep slip-prone areas dry.
  4. No horseplay around the pool.

→ If you’re looking for a nearby hospital or emergency clinic, HHER provides Emergency Care Services in Tyler and Longview Texas. Visit us today.