What is a Common Distraction for Parents and Child Care Providers Leading to Child Injuries? (Hint: It can Text, Browse, & E-Mail)
In these times that we live in, what is a common distraction leading to child injuries? If you guessed the mobile phone, you were right. There was a recent article posted titled - Keep An Eye on Your Children and Not Your Mobile Phone. The title of the article was both simple and powerful. Most people now have a mobile phone. A majority of mobile phone users are not so called smart phone users with text, e-mail, and web functionality. Because of this, we have access to information and yet more information at our fingertips instanteously. Unfortunately, many parents and child care providers are tethered, glued, and most importantly distracted by smart phones during time periods in which the children need attention rather than the mobile phone. Yes, mobile phones are wonderful tools that truly come in handy; however, mobile phones usage and distraction can and do lead to injuries and even death when reasonable and necessary supervision are not being consistently provided to children in day care centers, camps, schools, homes, and elsewhere.
The supervision of a child is a job. While multi-tasking is common with child care, it should not consist of incessant web searching, texting, watching You Tube videos, etc. . . Anything that takes a caregivers mind and eyes off of the children can result in serious personal injuries. Mobile phone distraction can result in any one of the following incidents:
- Child wanders away from day care center, home, school, neighbor's house, or camp and the is missing, abducted, and / or hit by a vehicle;
- Child drowns in a pool, bathtub, or other body of water;
- Child is strangulated by a jump rope, power cord, or other time;
- Child is burned in the kitchen, by a mechanical device or motor, or by liquids; and
- Child ingests poison, drugs, or a foreign object that caused airway obstruction or other medical complications.
The list of potential and real tragedies can go on and on. However, a common thread or cause to these horrible but preventable situations is the lack of solid supervision which often is caused by mobile phone distraction, inattention, and / or apathy.
If you have a child in a day care facility or being cared for by others, it is important to ask the caregivers about their mobile phone usage, restrictions on usage, and policies or procedures. Yes, mobile phones are good for communication and emergency situations but beyond that - - the mobile phone should be put away in a pocket or elsewhere so that the proper child care can be provided.
If a child has been injured due to the fault or inattention of others, there are some excellent resources available for parents as follows:
- The ABCs of Child Injury - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - What Every Parent Should Know.
- Florida Day Care Center Injuries - Legal Rights of the Injured Child - Building Blocks of Knowledge for Parents.