What to Do If an Animal Bites Your Child

ChildPlayingWithDog.jpg

When children see a furry animal, like a dog, their first instinct is often to embrace the animal with a hug or aggressive pet. While the intentions are usually pure, the dog may take this physical touch the wrong way and react. If an animal bites your child, there are several actions you need to take immediately.

  • Control the Bleeding: If the bite is bad enough to break skin, you need to control any bleeding as soon as possible. Use a clean washcloth or towel to gently apply pressure to the wound until the bleeding subsides. If the bite is severe enough, you may need to elevate the injured area.
  • Clean the Bite: As soon as the bleeding has stopped, clean the site of the injury with soap and water. If possible, hold the affected area under running water for a bit to rinse the bacteria away.
  • Cover the Area: After drying and gently placing antibiotic ointment on the dog bite, cover the area with a fresh bandage to keep infection from occurring.
  • Seek Information: If you can determine the owner of the animal, it’s important to find out whether the dog is up-to-date on shots and other vetting.
  • Visit a Doctor: If your child’s bite breaks skin, you should seek a doctor immediately. Typically a bite of this nature will require antibiotic therapy to prevent infection.

If you don’t know the animal that bit your child, you should see a doctor immediately as a rabies shot may be necessary. It’s also important to seek medical care if the wound is very deep or if the bite is on your child’s face.

If your child has suffered a dog bite and is need of medical care, consider visiting Medical City Children’s Urgent Care. We have kid-friendly physicians that are board-eligible in family medicine or emergency medicine, offer convenient access to the expert care you need right when you need it and are even open after hours or on the weekend.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.

Advertisements

Top 5 Fears of New Moms

iStock-504046036.jpg

Becoming a new mom can be overwhelming, wonderful and terrifying all at once. Exhaustion from lack of sleep can amplify the typical concerns that come from having a little one in the home. If you are anxious after bringing home your new baby, learning the realities behind some of your fears may help you overcome them.

  1. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: Many new moms are worried their baby will suffer SIDS and die in their sleep. It’s important to know that sudden infant death syndrome is very rare and there are ways you can greatly reduce your baby’s risk. Make sure your baby is put to sleep on his or her back, keep your baby’s bed in your room, and keep your baby’s crib free of pillows and stuffed animals.
  2. Inability To Nurse: It can be nerve-wracking if you’re unable to breastfeed your new baby immediately. It’s actually pretty rare that a woman physically can’t breastfeed, but many women do struggle to get it down at first. A lactation consultant may be able to help you learn the ins and outs of breastfeeding.
  3. Preparing For Baby At Home: There can be so much to do before you bring baby home from the hospital. It’s important to prioritize things like a safe car seat, well-made crib, clothes, receiving blankets and diapers and wipes.
  4. Not Bonding With Baby: While some new moms bond with their baby before it’s even born, others take some time. If you’re feeling PPD (also known as the baby blues), try to catch up on your sleep, allow friends and family to help as much as possible and get out of the house, even if just to get groceries.
  5. Mishandling Baby: Because babies are so small and fragile, many people worry they are going to mishandle him or her. The reality, however, is that most new parents feel this way and the chances of something like this actually happening are very slim. If you have a valid concern, call your pediatrician.

For more new parenting and safety tips, continue to check in on the Medical City Children’s Urgent Care blog. Medical City Children’s Urgent Care is a kid-friendly medical facility dedicated to providing children the best possible care.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you or your child.