We expect our nannies and nursery nurses to have qualifications and experience when it comes to looking after children, but as mothers we aren't expected to know anything!
Another brick in the wall
This glaring omission was brought home to me this weekend when my youngest son hit a brick wall with his head!
Screaming, he came running towards me with blood pouring out of the back of his head. It was at that point that I wished I had taken a first aid course, because other than stemming the bleeding and comforting my poor son, I was pretty clueless, other than thinking I needed to call an ambulance.
Quick first aid response
Luckily for us (and the potential emergency services that would have been called), we were staying at the house of a surgeon. Within minutes he had taken control, stopped the bleeding, applied an appropriate dressing and bandaged my son's head (who by now was rather enjoying all the attention). I now realise I could have done most of this, if I'd just had the confidence, or perhaps some knowledge of first aid.
It is amazing that as parents we are not expected to do a paediatric first aid course when our babies are born.
A few years ago, a mother saved the life of her young child just days after she had attended a first aid course - she was able to apply CPR. A survey in 2009 showed that 82% of parents would not have a clue what to do if their child started choking.
Would you know what to do if your child burnt himself?
I'm now going to be looking for my nearest paediatric first aid course. And whilst I'm at it, finding out where I can learn how to sew, cook, make papier-mâché masks, deal with hormonal boys, apply long division...
You may be interested in reading Our Favourite Fast First Aid Tips.
Amanda Coxen, Working Mum and Tinies Director