Paediatric experts share their tips for staying safe

Posted: July 17, 2019

Useful advice as the school holidays approach

As the school summer holidays approach, staff at the Great Western Hospital expect to see more children, who are usually fit and healthy, needing treatment for preventable injuries and accidents. 

With six weeks of summer ahead, paediatric experts from Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust want to raise awareness of some of the most common reasons for children visiting the emergency department and how to stay safe. 

Tim Slade, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, said: "We see more football and cycling related injuries, but one of the more risky activities is trampolining. Children should be encouraged to enjoy their time off school but parents and children should also know how to stay safe while doing these activities." 

Dr Lucy Grain, Consultant Paediatrician, said: "One of the most important things you can teach your child is road safety. It's vital that children know how to behave at the side of the road, by always looking both ways and only crossing at safe points, such as zebra or pelican crossings. Unfortunately, we do see children involved in road traffic collisions which is traumatic for all involved. Simple conversations about road safety might just save a life. 

"Another way of staying safe outside is to ensure that children always wear a helmet when riding their bike, with this simple safety measure reducing the risk of brain injury by nearly 70 percent. You should also check the brakes on your child's bike. 

"Lake swimming and water jumping are a great way to cool off, but sadly we do see cases of children drowning or near-drowning as a result of outdoor swimming. Being a capable swimmer could save a child's life and being able to tread water will significantly reduce the risk of drowning. It's important to be aware that lakes and rivers can be far deeper than they seem. Children should always be supervised when swimming or being near water, as it is possible to drown in just a few centimetres of water. 

"Finally I would advise parents to keep on top of their child's medicine during the holidays. A change of routine or being away from home can make it more difficult to remember to take any prescribed medication. It's also important to make sure you have repeat prescriptions organised. 

"Pollen counts are also high, so make sure to have antihistamines if necessary and an inhaler for asthmatics." 

These simple safety measures will help you to have an enjoyable summer, while staying safe and reducing the risk of a hospital visit.

Translate this page: