First aid essentials for toddlers

Since this age requires a fully stocked first aid kit, here is a list of essentials to make sure you have on hand. Photo: Michael Bentley

SILVER SPRING, Md, February 23, 2013 – Toddlers are called toddlers for one very good reason, they have become mobile and well, they toddle. Balance and coordination are not yet strongly developed, but an abundance of curiosity and excitement are, which can lead to many bumps, bruises, scrapes, falls, and tumbles. Since this age requires a fully stocked first aid kit, here is a list of essentials to make sure you have on hand.

Anti-biotic ointment

When a cut or scrape shows up, you should first wash it, then once it is dry, apply an anti-biotic ointment to the injury to assist in healing. These ointments not only assist in healing, they also help create a barrier between the cut and other surfaces.



You will probably need a healthy supply of adhesive bandages. Aside from the standard flesh colored ones, you can get bandages with your child’s favorite character on them, which may make the bandage more of a fashion statement or badge of honor than something he wants to take off. Keeping cuts and scrapes covered is important for allowing them to heal because it prevents the cut from being infected from outside elements it may otherwise come into contact with, especially in a toddler who specializes in dirty.

Adhesive bandages with your child’s favorite character are readily available. Photo by Elizabeth Albert. Click to enlarge.




A fall on a deck or playing with sticks can lead to splinters. In the summer, bees can be attracted to the same sweet foods your child is, which can be especially problematic if your child is covered in that food. Having a pair of tweezers handy can help quickly expel a stinger to reduce the pain or pluck a splinter out of a finger to prevent infection.


Children’s Benadryl

While your child may not be showing any allergies now, they can crop up at any time. Whether it is coming in contact with a new food, being stung by a bee for the first time, or developing an outrageous case of hay fever, having some children’s Benadryl on hand can help reduce a reaction. Check with your pediatrician for the correct dosage for your child.


Calamine lotion

Calamine lotion is handy to have in any medicine cabinet. The lotion relieves the itching of rashes and is used most often to relieve the itch of mosquito bites and poison ivy, both of which are common irritants in children. Children will itch bites and poison ivy raw, which can lead to scars and, in some cases, secondary infections. Using an itch relieving cream can make the itch disappear or at least tolerable.


Ice packs

Icing a bump on the head, a bruise, or a small burn is always tricky with children. Most do not like having such cold held up next to the skin and will try to wiggle away. However, there are a number of child-friendly ice packs on the market that may make it easier than holding a paper towel full of dripping ice to a child’s forehead. You can get small freezer gel packs designed with your child’s favorite character. There is also the Boo Boo Bunny that some kids find comforting when hurt. He is a small blush yellow bunny head on a ring of plush fabric that hold a small removable plastic freezer cube. Your child can play with the bunny when he is not hurt, and then slide the frozen cube in when he is.

Fun child-friendly ice packs, like the Boo Boo Bunny, can make icing a bump or bruise easier. Click to enlarge.



Children’s ibuprofen or acetaminophen

Bumps and bruises can hurt and bother children after the initial incident. Having a bottle of children’s ibuprofen of acetaminophen on hand can make you child feel more like himself and less cranky due to discomfort. Ask you pediatrician which they recommend and what dosage is appropriate for your child.


Follow Brighid on Twitter a @BrighidMoret and receive updates when new columns post on Facebook or Google+.. Read more about first time parenting issues in Parenting the First Time Through at The Communities at The Washington Times.

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Brighid Moret

Brighid is a freelance writer and first time mother.  She holds an MA in Writing from Johns Hopkins University.  Find her on Facebook @Brighid Moret


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