As parents, we are always on a high alert to safeguard our children from coming in the harm’s way. From ensuring they eat only healthy stuff to encouraging cleanliness, we keep an eye on everything they do. Yet, despite all this monitoring and supervision, our children might still harm or injure themselves. One of the reasons this can happen could be due to our own behavior which goes unchecked. It might not have occurred to us, but some us might be causing more harm to our kids (albeit unknowingly) than they could do it to themselves. So, here are 9 such harmful things that parents do to their kids without realizing it:
1. Giving Tablets To Play With
We’ve heard innumerable advise to reduce screen time of our kids, especially toddlers. But have you ever wondered why tablet/phone screen exposure is harmful to your kids? These gadgets contain ‘blue light’. This light is absorbed by the retinal pigment epithelium and photoreceptors of the eye, thereby creating oxidative and thermal stress to the eye. In simple words, this stress causes direct damage to the retina of the human eye (1). Now, imagine this happening to the delicate retina of your child?
2. Sliding On Rusty Slides
Most parents let their children play by themselves on slides and swings in a park. However, do make it a point to check if the quality of the slide is good. If the slide is rusty or broken toward the ends, then don’t allow your child to play on it. The sharp, rusted edges can easily cut throw your child’s skin and cause infections such as tetanus (2).
3. Making Them Stand On Chairs
Have you ever wondered why the child’s seat has a safety strap? This is because kids are usually hyperactive and are too young to understand how balance works. No wonder then that most kids experience their first injuries by falling from a chair.
4. Urging Kids To Eat Fast
Let’s face it, we all have done this with our child at some point or the other. Usually, this happens when it is something like heading out for a movie or finishing the dinner at the restaurant. The child might be eating at his/her own pace. But due to the urgency involved, we might force-feed the kid or ask them to eat fast. This could prove fatal as the child could choke on the food. So, never do this to your child. You can always pack the food or take a doggy bag if your child is not in a mood to eat.
5. Feeding While Watching TV/Online Shows
It’s easy to get distracted when you are watching TV or some online show. However, refrain from doing so. Kids cannot tell when their mouth is full and are slow in chewing their food. There is a high likelihood that you might over-fill their mouth with food which can result in choking.
6. Making Them Jump On Trampolines
The American Academy of Pediatrics strictly bars trampoline in any homes with children. This is because, despite looking seemingly harmless, jumping on a trampoline can lead to major injuries of the head, concussions, and limb fractures. Sometimes, these injuries can even damage the brain (3).
7. Riding A Bicycle Without Helmet
Need we explain this? We often assume that our child riding his/her bicycle in the neighborhood is usually harmless. But remember, your child, especially a toddler, has no control over speed and might not have sharp reflexes to hit the brakes on time. Over-speeding or rough terrain can easily lead to falls and head injuries.
8. Allowing Them To Play In Mud
We sure love watching kids play in mud time and again. But with so many pollutants around, the mud can be easily contaminated. This can happen especially after rains when the flowing water carries dirt, mud or even dangerous chemicals with it. And if your child happens to have a cut or injury in the hands, he/she will easily get an infection.
9. Encouraging Them To Try Dangerous Climbs In The Park
Often, in our bid to encourage sporting spirit in our children, we make them try dangerous hurdles in the parks. Some of them might be placed at a height from where a fall could be fatal. The distance between the hurdles can also result in your child falling face-down first.
We’re sure the activities listed here might not have crossed your mind as harmful ones. However, we hope you now realize how these things can be potentially harmful to your child. All it takes is a moment’s distraction to cause the damage. Therefore, avoid these activities in the interest of your child’s safety and well-being.