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It is important that we teach our kids what to do in emergency situations. Kids are smarter that we think, and some effort on parents’ part can even save a life.
Recently, I came across a news item about how a 2-year-old girl Myah Powell saved her 8 months pregnant mother’s life when she collapsed in the bedroom. Myah’s father was not at home but she did not lose calm and acted very smartly like a real grown-up. She had seen her parents using “FaceTime” to call her grandmother. So, the little girl immediately took her mother’s phone, opened the app and called her grandmother. She shouted on the call that her mother was lying on the floor and needs help. In turn, the grandmother called Myah’s father and informed him about the accident. Her father reached home in no time and rushed his wife to the hospital. The woman got the required treatment and was discharged from the hospital after 3 days. She encourages other parents to teach their kids what to do in case of an emergency as it might save other lives.
This incident proves that even the toddlers can make serious decisions and act with mindfulness in extreme situations.
Very often we see posts about lost kids, wailing around, unable to tell their whereabouts. Lucky are those who reach to safe hands and these people genuinely put in efforts to find out their guardians and hand them over safely, but many unfortunate ones end up in misery, get trapped in trafficking etc. Such frightful posts always leave me thinking about those kids and parents, and whether they would ever meet again or were destined to be parted forever.
So, it’s important for the parents to ensure that our children are capable enough to share the required information if by any chance, they are lost. This training process for your kids, teaching them what information they need to know in case of emergency, should start at the age of around 3 years. If you feel your kid is ready to learn even before, don’t wait, just do it. They won’t be able to feed it in their minds immediately but with regular practice and repetition, they can be prepared for any such eventuality.
So, here is the list which every parent should teach to their kids and prepare them for any emergency situation:
Teach your children their own names along with both mother’s and father’s full name. They should be able to tell people who they are.
Children should know their full address including which city you live in and the landmarks too, if any.
Children should memorize at least one parent’s mobile number. Prefer the parent who stays in a proper network coverage area and most likely to be able to answer to the calls.
Teach your kids about the allergies they have, if any. Also, tell them if anyone else in the family is also allergic to something. This can help in case of any accidents where you are not in a state to talk, and kids can furnish such lifesaving information.
If you or your child has any illness or any medical condition for which you take regular medication, or you if are allergic to certain medicines, tell your children about it. It is also advisable to always have a medical card in your wallet with this information. In case you use an inhaler for asthma, make sure your kid knows where to find it. This can save your life.
While teaching about medicines to kids, make sure to teach them about the ill effects of taking medicines without a doctor’s prescription and advice, so that they never eat them accidently during the play.
Your children should be aware of these – explain to them what 1-0-0 is, and how and when they should call. Since most of us don’t use landline telephones these days, we need to teach them how to dial 1-0-0 on a phone even when it is locked. Also make them aware of numbers for an ambulance, fire brigade and your family doctor’s number, and tell them where these numbers are, so that they can act appropriately when required.
Role play is the best way to teach anything to kids. Enact in front of them to show how to dial and what to talk on the phone. Dial 1-0-0, put your phone on speaker mode and let them listen to what the operators will say. This will make the process less complicated for them. Tell them that the person on the line will ask for personal information like their name, address and the problem occurred, and that it is OK to share the information with a stranger in such situations only.
Children should also need to know where they should go and what they should do in case of fire. Teach them the “do’s and dont’s” of the same. Also practice your family evacuation plan.
Children also need to know where they should take cover in case of natural disasters like earthquakes. Teach them to go to an open area away from the walls and doors and use stairs instead of lifts. Teach them not to panic.
Another way of teaching them is just have a question and answer session during a playdate. With practice and regular learning they will memorize the details soon. Remember, they are much smarter than we actually think them to be and can grasp the things very quicly.
If you have any further inputs, feel free to add. Stay safe and smart.
Published here earlier.
Image source: shutterstock