With small children, it can often be difficult to tell the serious accidents from those which can be more easily treated. Unfortunately, broken bones are one of the more common injuries that children suffer. The most common bone for a child to break is the arm or the wrist since it’s instinctive to extend an arm to break a fall. Although broken bones will heal, there is likely to be a lot of shock, tears, and pain when a child does one. As a parent, it’s important to know exactly what to do so that you can best help your child to cope and recover from the fracture.

Here are the best steps to take.

What If Your Child Breaks a Bone

Step #1. Give First Aid
In most cases, a broken bone is unlikely going to need an ambulance or a rushed trip to the emergency room, although it is important to seek medical attention. Bear in mind that if your child has suffered an open fracture where the bone has cut through the skin or if they are losing blood, then it’s important to get them to the ER as quickly as possible. However, regular fractures will not need such emergency attention. It’s a good idea to know basic first aid, such as putting a broken arm or wrist in a sling or securing a broken leg, to make sure that no further damage is caused.

Step #2. Seek Medical Attention
If your child breaks a bone, it’s important to have it checked by a medical professional as soon as possible. In the case of serious fractures, this will usually mean a trip to your local emergency room. However, for less serious breaks, a trip to the doctor, if urgent care options are available, will likely be an adequate solution. The important thing is that your child is seen by a medical professional as quickly as possible so that the damage can be identified and treatment began. Bear in mind that most broken bones can be easily reset with a cast in just a few weeks’ time.

Step #3. Other Steps to Take
Seeing your little one in pain can be heart-breaking for any parent, so when and if it happens, it’s not uncommon to feel a little bit helpless. The good news is that although you may not be able to take the pain away completely, there are several things that you can do to keep your child more comfortable before being seen by a doctor. Firstly, you should take measures to immobilize the limb using a splint or sling, then the area should be elevated to help ease the swelling. In some cases, you may also want to apply an ice pack to the area to help the swelling go down. Make sure that you do not apply the ice pack directly to the skin, and keep it on for no more than twenty minutes at a time.

A child breaking a bone can be the worst nightmare for any parent. However, the good news is that there are several steps that you can take to help both of you quickly get through the situation.