Kids- They’re Not Just Small Adults

I think all healthcare providers are taught that kids are not just small adults. This is Not Just Small Adultstrue in so many ways. Diminished immunity and protection from disease is just one example but is a very real concern. Infants have so little blood circulating in their tiny bodies that even a seemingly insignificant amount of bleeding may be life-threatening. Most adults who suffer a cardiac arrest are responding to a cardiac event. When a child suffers cardiac arrest the underlying cause is usually respiratory in nature. They can’t take our medicine- or at least not in our doses and adult automotive seating is never appropriate.

As important as it is for healthcare workers to understand this – it is more important for the rest of us to understand. There is a certain logic to using or modifying things that we use everyday to use for infants and kids. There are so many reasons why this is a hazardous practice. It took us years – in some cases generations to know what we know. Consider…

Young kids are not born knowing to look both ways before they cross the road or that pools or even bathtubs are dangerous places. The nine months spent in utero is just the first part of the development process. Bones continue to grow and proportions change- speech develops. Until speech develops, kids can’t tell us they hurt, can’t tell us they feel warm and don’t understand a lot of what we say. They need us to understand, to look out for them. To speak for them when they are unable. To understand what they don’t know.

They respond to you in ways no adult ever will. How you eat, if you smoke or get drunk- if you bully or if you enrich your life through reading. Your involvement in the life of kids – here and at home, in school or in the car makes more difference than you know. PS being a parent is not required – simply being a caring adult.

About the Author

Jim is a transportation safety expert with more than 40 years in both the emergency medical services and the school bus industries. Jim is a former member of the PedSafe Expert team and is proud to have been one of the original contributors to more than 13 years ago.


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