My toddler injured her leg?

(March 12, 2010)

Toddlers jump, hop, skip, seldom walk, and often fall! Bruises, sprains, and small injuries are a part of their lives. But, at times, they do suffer severe injuries like fractures. Children’s bones are flexible and manage to absorb the shock better than adults, but if the pressure is too much, their bones may break easily.

A toddler can suffer the following types of leg injuries:

•    Fractures or broken bones
•    Dislocations of the bones
•    Sprains, wherein the ligaments stretch and tear
•    Strains or simple muscle pulls, wherein the muscles stretch or tear
•    Muscle blows, wherein the muscle is hurt
•    Minor bruises
•    Bone bruises, resulting from hitting against something hard

You need to understand the severity of the problem by observing your child. If your child is able to do his/her normal activities, then the injury is not severe. However, if your child complains of pain and inability to move the limb, then you need to seek a doctor’s help immediately.

When to seek medical help? If your child has suffered a leg injury, then you need to make sure that he/she is doing well.  You should to seek medical help in case you notice any of the following signs:

•    Swelling of the affected area
•    If your child complains of pain
•    If your child complains of inability to move the limb
•    If the bleeding refuses to stop
•    If the skin beyond the injury is blue and pale
•    If your child is under one year of age
•    If your child limps while walking
•    If the skin is spilt open and needs stitches

Care at home. In case your child has suffered a leg injury, here are some things that you can do before the doctor arrives:

•    Treat the wound using a sterile dressing.
•    Cover the wound and the bone to avoid infection.
•    Support the injured leg with padding or with your hands in order to avoid the break.
•    If it is an open fracture, control the bleeding, but do not put pressure on the exposed bone.
•    Make sure your child does not move much as less movement means less pain.
•    If it is a wound, you need to first control bleeding.
•    Never attempt to straighten a twisted leg.
•    Apply ice or cold packs to reduce swelling and pain. It also helps in controlling bleeding.

Keep in mind that it is always better to seek a professional help.

Submitted by P T on March 12, 2010 at 12:15

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