For adults, soft bedding and window-blind cords pose little, if any danger. But for a young child, these everyday items could prove deadly. October has been designated as Children’s Health Month. Consider taking a few minutes to evaluate whether your home may have hidden health hazards that could send your child to the ER at the local hospital. You might also consider talking to a physician at your community hospital about some of the common health hazards for young children and how to address them.
Be Mindful of Fire and Carbon Monoxide Risks
Walk around your home to assess the number and location of smoke alarms. Experts recommend having smoke alarms installed on every floor, inside each bedroom, and outside each sleeping area. It’s a good idea to test your smoke alarm batteries every month and to change them every six months. Also, it’s best to replace smoke alarms after 10 years. Remember to install carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home. Check these batteries and replace them as often as you would for a smoke alarm.
Prevent Burns and Electrocution
Inquisitive children are at a high risk of suffering burns and electrocution. Make sure that your hair dryer has an immersion protection device, which prevents electrocution if it is accidentally dropped into water. Additionally, adjust your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent scalding. Place containers with hot liquids out of reach of your child’s grasp.
Reduce the Risk of Strangling and Suffocation
Small children can easily be strangled if they play with window-blind cords. Be sure to cut the loops of these cords to prevent strangulation. If your baby is on an adult bed, remove suffocation hazards such as pillows and soft bedding. Eliminate gaps between the bed and the wall, headboard, or footboard to prevent entrapment.
At Riverside Community Hospital, our team of caring healthcare providers is dedicated to helping members of the Riverside community lead healthy lifestyles. Our community hospital provides comprehensive healthcare services, including bariatric weight loss, robotic surgery, organ transplants, heart care, and much more. If you wish to get a referral to a physician or specialist, contact our Consult-A-Nurse line at (951) 788-3000.