It can be difficult to know if your child has a broken bone (also called a “fracture”), if they need emergency care or if they simply need at-home care. To complicate matters further, children need special care when they do break a bone because their bones are still growing and have a different consistency and quality than adult bones.
Children can break bones in a number of ways due to their constant activity and curiosity. They can fall, crush a finger in a door, touch dangerous machinery that they shouldn’t, get hit by a ball, etc.
Here are some important things to note if your child has an injury:
- Bring your child to the emergency room if the finger, wrist, or arm is not in normal alignment or if there is a skin wound leading to the fracture.
- Ice the injury if the injured body part looks normal and is movable, but keep an eye on your child’s symptoms.
- If there is significant bruising or swelling, bring your child to see a hand surgeon as soon as possible. The finger, wrist or arm may be broken, but an x-ray is the only way to tell.