The first few years of motherhood can be scary — it feels like every day there’s something new to learn about the full-time position. You rarely get a full night’s rest. Your child’s young immune system makes him or her vulnerable to every sickness in the book. Crying doesn’t always signify hunger. However, through it all, mothers build a stronger bond with their babies every day through these rough trials, growing more protective of them with every little cry, every little nap and every little smile.
If most protective mothers could have just one superpower, it would probably be something along the lines of preventing any physical or emotional harm from their babies. While emotional distress and mental breakdowns are uncontrollable (usually), there are several common injuries to babies and toddlers that could easily be prevented in the first place. Head trauma has the worst consequences when the brain is still developing and can have an effect on the child’s learning and socialization capabilities, and can even lead to death.
Suffocation or Strangulation
Toys and household items are a serious risk for babies and young toddlers going through Sigmund Frued’s “oral stage.” The need for oral stimulation, according to the psychological theory, causes babies to engage in chewing on anything in sight. Keep household items out of reach of young children and closely monitor which toys you allow your child to use. If it can fit in their mouths, keep it away until they’re just a bit older.
Check out the quality of the toys your baby plays with. If small pieces can break off easily, this symbolizes a poor-quality product that you should refrain from allowing your child to play with. If you can’t manage to pull the toy from your child because of his or her love for it, make sure to supervise and make sure the child doesn’t ever put it in their mouth. If and when the toy does break into pieces, throw it out.
It’s important to recognize that drowning is not vaguely the result of not being able to swim in bodies of water. By definition, it means death by submersion and inhalation of water. While most mothers with common sense would not allow babies to swim in the pool with the “big kids,” babies can still drown in those cheap portable baby pools or in bathtubs. Keep an eye on them at all times when they are around or in water. If the phone rings, wrap him or her up in a towel and bring them with you to answer. Never leave even a bucket of water unattended if you have a baby in the home. If you have a regular pool, consider installing a four-foot fence with a lock out of the baby’s reach.
When a baby falls, it can have much more tragic consequences than when a teen or adult falls. Keep baby gates around potentially dangerous areas, particularly around the stairs and any railings that a small child could slip through. Keep any baby carriers away from edges of tables and countertops — babies can easily rock them off and have a serious injury.