Should I Take My Toddler To Hospital After A Bang On The Head?

For a parent, one of the most worrying things to see on a young child is a rapid swelling of the head after a fall or bang. There may be no need for concern as the skull is thick to protect the brain from injury–and more than a few of us really were dropped on our heads as children! However, it is important to know the difference between a minor bump and something more serious.


The difference between minor and serious head injuries

A head injury might be accompanied by any one of a number of symptoms. There may be bleeding, swelling, and discolouration. Typical is the ‘egg’ swelling on the forehead. None of these symptoms should be an immediate cause for concern. However, if your child lost consciousness when injured, then it’s important that you seek immediate medical help.


Treating minor head injuries

Minor head injuries are often accompanied by screaming and crying. That’s perfectly normal. If the head injury happens just before bed and there’s no swelling or bleeding, then it’s fine to let them sleep. Check on your child ten or fifteen minutes after they’ve fallen asleep, and if you are still concerned, wake them up to see that they’re alright. If you are having difficulty waking them and you’re concerned, phone for medical help.


Treating more serious head injuries

Very occasionally the swelling caused by a head injury will be soft and spongy. If this is the case, there may be some significant internal bleeding and you should get medical help immediately. The same applies if there are any symptoms of vision difficulties. Other symptoms which may be concerning and require immediate medical attention include: continued drowsiness, dizziness, seizures, headache, confusion, vomiting.


Trust your instinct

No one knows your child better than you. If they suffer a head injury, always trust your instinct. It is better to be safe than sorry, and if your child is acting stranger than usual after a head injury then seeking medical advice is always the right thing to do.