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When To Seek Medical Attention For A Child's Head Injury

Child safety is at it's most critical during the first few years of a child's life. A toddler is not yet equipped with the physical and mental maturity required to allow him to take care of himself. Little tots also tend to get in trouble for the littlest things, which is why bumps inevitably happen. There are accidents, however, that could lead to serious injury, particularly those that involve the head.

Thankfully, some bumps and lumps are nothing to worry about, and kids will simply heal. Unfortunately, when a child suffers from a bump, there are certain accompanying symptoms that should never be ignored. If you see these signs, make sure to call a doctor immediately.

For Children Under One (1) Year Old:

-soft, bulging spot on the fontanel or top of the head

-fainting or loss of consciousness following the accident


-unexplained sleepiness or fussiness

-extreme bruising or swelling


-clear fluid or blood leaking from the nose or ears

For Children Over One (1) Year Old:

-persistent pain in the neck or head

-bleeding or an open wound on the site of the injury

-clear fluid or blood leaking from the nose or ears

-vomiting or nausea


-fainting or loss of consciousness following the accident



-unexplained sleepiness

-memory loss

-behavioral changes

Critical Period

The critical time period after a child suffers from a bump to the head is the first 24 hours immediately after. The most serious symptoms of injury generally develop during this time, although a few may occur 48 to 72 hours after. If a child bumped his head, observe him closely for any warning signs that might point to a serious issue, then see a doctor immediately.

Care After a Head Injury

Allow the child to rest and discourage any active play or strenuous activities. Wrap ice or frozen vegetables in a towel and apply it on the injury. Do not apply ice directly to avoid frostbite. Stay with the child to provide support and to observe his condition. If in doubt, always take the safe route and seek medical attention right away.


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