10 Most common childhood health problems – how to take care of your child

Broken bones

  • If you suspect a break or fracture. Don’t let the child use the limb or part and don’t move it yourself, leave him where he is, if possible, keep him warm and call doctor.
  • If bone fragment protrudes through the skin, cover the wound lightly with sterile dressing.


If you must move him, apply a splint to the injured limb.

Arm: a sling may be the easiest way to keep the arm immobile. Or use a pillow as suggested below.

Leg: slide a pillow under the leg. Be sure to include the joint at each end of the broken bone. The strips of cloth or bandage around the pillow at three- or four- inch intervals.

A long board can can be used if no pillow is available. Or, tie the injured leg to the other leg, spacing the ties every six inches or so. Make sure they are not too tight.

Back or neck: If necessary, slide him on a board or door, but leave him where he is if you can. Get a doctor immediately


  • Treat minor burns with petroleum jelly or burns ointment.
  • Soda and water paste or a wet tea bag also help in soothing.
  • Cover with clean gauze or sterile dressing. Leave blisters alone.
  • Any large or deep burns need medical attention promptly.
  • Wrap the child in a sheet or cover area with clean cloths; keep the child warm; and get him to the hospital.


  • Pick up the child by his feet, and slap his back sharply.
  • If a child is too heavy to pick up by his feet place him in jackknife position over your shoulder or a chair back. If the object does not come out, go to a doctor or hospital immediately.
  • If child swallows something small and smooth, such as a fruit seed, button, or small coin, check his bowel movements for a few days to be sure he has passed it.
  • If he swallows a sharp object, such as pin or needle,call a doctor immediately.

Convulsions (seizures, spells, fits)

While convulsion is alarming, don’t lose your head. Most last only a few minutes. Your main effort is to keep the child from hurting himself.
Place him in a bed or rug, away from sharp objects and furniture, on his abdomen with chin raised. In this position he can breath easily, is less likely to draw saliva into his lungs and cannot swallows his tongue.
Watch him closely, do not put a child having convulsions into the bathtub. When it is over. Put him to bed.
Cuts and bleeding

For a small cut, wash out well with soap and water and apply a clean bandage or freshly ironed piece of cloth. If the cut is deep and large, cover with sterile gauze, press firmly over the wound to stop the bleeding, hold in place until you can get to a doctor or emergency room of the hospital.
It bleeding doesn’t stop, place a clean towel over the bleeding point and apply strong pressure.

Ear troubles

If an insect has crawled in, stop the buzzing which frightens the child by dropping in a little lukewarm olive or mineral oil. The oil will still the insect and may wash it out. Don’t attempt to dislodge any other object yourself get a doctor.

Particle in eye

Wash your hands before attempting to remove a particle from the eye.
Tell the child not to rub the eye.
To dislodge the spack, bring the upper lid down over the lower for a movement or two while the child looks upward. This causes tears which may wash the speck out. If this falls, look for the spack. If you see it, try to remove it by gently touching it with the corner of a clean handkerchief.

Nose bleed

Reassure the child and keep him quiet, setting up, tell him to breathe through his mouth,
Press gently against the nostril, for five or ten minutes.
If this doesn’t stop the bleeding, try ice packs against the back of the neck or cold wet cloth over the child’s nose.
It bleeding continues, call the doctor. If nose bleeding is frequent or heavy, get the doctor’s help to diagnose the cause.

Puncture wounds

Gently press near the hole to encourage bleeding which will wash out the wound. Cover lightly until the doctor can see it, but don’t try to close it with bandage or adhesive be sure to check with the doctor on the advisability of tetanus shot, or if your child’s shots are up to date, a booster dose.


  • Wash the area thoroughly, soap suds will help to soften the skin around the splinter and ease its removal.
  • Use sterilized tweezers may be less upsetting to the child, but sometimes it won’t catch hold unless the splinter is eased up with the sharper instrument.
  • To sterilize, pass the instrument through a flame or wipe with alcohol a child of 4- or more may remove the splinter himself. He will be much less upset if you let him try.
  • After the splinter is removed, press the area gently to make it bleed a bit, then wash carefully or apply a mild antiseptic.
  • A sterile bandage may be needed to protect the area. A splinter deeply embedded in the child’s flesh should always be removed by a doctor.