Look, Listen and Act Fast for Three Common Child First Aid Emergencies

They’re the most precious thing in your life. Knowing what to do should the worst happen brings great piece of mind.

The Australian Red Cross provides parents with tips about how to learn to look, listen and act fast in response to common three common child first aid emergencies

Allergic or Anaphylactic Reactions

LOOK for an itchy rash and for swollen lips, face and eyes.

LOOK for signs of a cause, like pollen, a biting insect, recently eaten food, even Latex.

LISTEN for difficult talking or breathing.

ACT and phone 000 if the child is having an anaphylactic reaction. If the child uses an auto-injection Epi-pen, follow the instructions and use it. Reassure the child until paramedics arrive.

Burns and Scalds

LOOK for red, blistered, swelling and painful skin.

LISTEN for obvious distress in the child.

ACT to remove the child from what’s burning them and immediately run cold running water over the burned area for up to 20 minutes. After cooling the burn, cover it with a clean dressing. Don’t apply any ointments, butter or powders.

Choking in Children

LOOK for blue, mottled skin, a gripping of the throat and agitated behaviour. In infants look for a flaring of the nostrils or drawing in of the soft tissue above the sternum and between the ribs.

LISTEN for a change in normal talkative or play patterns. Choking can be silent. If a child can cough, speak or cry out their airway is not completely obstructed. Do not intervene, but encourage a child to cough up the obstruction themselves.

ACT by sitting down and placing the infant or child across your legs with their head low. If you can see the obstruction, attempt to clear the child’s airway with your finger. If that fails, give up to five slaps on their back between the shoulder blades, using the heel of your hand and a motion that sweeps toward their head. Recheck their airway. At any time, if a child becomes unconscious, phone 000.

Playgroup NSW offers members discounts on Red Cross first aid training. Learn what you would need to do to act in a family emergency and save a life.

Playgroup NSW Members—take advantage of your 15% discount on Red Cross first aid training

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Playgroup NSW leads play-based programs and services for NSW families with children birth to school age, offering development, shared experiences, and family support, that results in active citizens and inclusive communities.