Parents have an innate need to keep their kids safe and protected at all costs. It’s a feeling that every mom and dad will be familiar with; a natural, instinctive compulsion to do whatever you can to make sure your little ones don’t get harmed.

Unfortunately, life can be quite unpredictable, throwing risks, dangers, and obstacles in our paths when we least expect them, and even if you do all you can to keep your kids safe, they might still get hurt, through no fault of your own.

This is especially true when it comes to car accidents. With six million accidents occurring in the US every single year, and many of those accidents involving physical injuries for the drivers and passengers involved, the simple act of driving your kids to school could result in traumatic consequences if you happen to run into a reckless or negligent road user on the way.

Seeing your child hurt is never a pleasant experience, and it can be quite a traumatic and difficult one to deal with, but it’s important to take the right steps, acting quickly and decisively, to help your child get the care they need. Here are some useful steps to follow if an accident happens.

child is injured

Assess the Injury

There’s a lot to think about when an accident happens, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. You need to consider reporting the matter to the police, filing a claim with your insurance company, exchanging information with the other driver, contacting a personal injury lawyer, and more, but the first priority should be focusing on the health and safety of yourself and your passengers.

If your child is injured, try to remain as calm as possible and take a moment to assess the injury. Common car accident injuries can range from simple cuts and scrapes to broken bones, concussions, whiplash, and more. If your child is in serious pain, try not to move them and wait for first responders to arrive. If the injury doesn’t appear too serious, you can carefully help your child out of the car.

Get Help Immediately

When it comes to car accident injuries, swift diagnosis, and treatment are essential to prevent further complications, especially where children are concerned. There are many cases of injuries not seeming too serious at first, but gradually getting worse as the days go by, so it’s vital to get to a doctor as soon as possible and not take any chances.

The longer you wait, the greater the risks become regarding issues like a concussion, infection, and so on, and many kids might not be able to notice that something is wrong right away if they have a concussion or brain injury, so you can’t always rely on their own assessments. Get to a doctor or call paramedics to the scene straight away.

Report the Incident

You should also make sure to report the accident to the police. Even if the accident seems relatively minor and nobody appears to be hurt, be sure to call the cops anyway. They’ll send an officer out to the scene to gather witness statements, assist with the exchange of information, and advise you on what to do next.

By contacting the police, you’ll also be able to have access to an official police report of the incident, and this can be very important later on if your child is injured and you need to build a legal case or file an insurance claim to cover the medical costs.

Follow the Doctor’s Advice

Once you’ve visited the doctor and got a professional diagnosis for your child’s condition, it’s important to do exactly as they say and follow their advice to the letter to give your little one the best chance of a full recovery. Children can’t always be trusted to follow the doctor’s orders, so it’s up to you to make sure they rest properly, take any medicine they need to take, and so on.

You should also be sure to keep a close eye on your children in the days that follow and look out for any strange behavior or signs of serious injuries. Kids with concussions or brain injuries, for example, may suddenly become forgetful, irritable, or act out of character, so monitor them closely and call the doctor again if you have any concerns.

Conclusion

Seeing your child is injured in any kind of accident can be a stressful and traumatic experience for any parent, so as well as following these tips to keep your little one safe, be sure to spend some time focusing on your own health, especially your mental health too, and seek counselling or therapy if you find yourself struggling with anxiety or depression in the wake of an incident like this.

This is a contributed post

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Claire Kirby

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