Google Doctor Anytime
I am a father of three that makes me a somewhat experienced parent. My kids are aged 5.5, 3.9 and 1.25 to be as precise as a I can be.
They have all been raised with the computer in the kitchen turned on so that myself or my partner can take a quick breather between tending to chores and the kid's needs by browsing the web as a distraction. I am sure most parents do the same.
The hardest thing about being a parent for the first time is that you just don't know anything. In fact anything you did know up till becoming a parent is for someone else's child not yours which made it easy to give an opinion. Over the past 5.5 years of being a parent, I have learn't a lot about what is dangerous and what needs to go directly to the doctor. Luckily aside from a few deep cuts, there hasn't been anything really life threatening.
That was until yesterday when my son (the youngest of the three), decided he could make his way onto his sister's bed. He managed to climb up on his own for the very first time. Lucky for him no one had seen him do it. Unlucky for us all, was that when we did catch site of him he was so excited that he fell off, landing on his back and hitting his head on the hard wooden floor.
It wasn't his first fall hitting his head, that is another thing you get used to as a parent, but this fall was from a height and he did hit his head (with a thud).
One of the dangers of having a computer in the kitchen is that when you notice a sympton you jump on google to find out what it means, what it is and how it can be treated. This is the first thing you do before you call a doctor etc.
The problem with Googling things is that the web is filled with so much junk. Much of it is real and accurate, but so much more of it is just writing, words an ordinary person has put together. It isn't substantiated.
What I was actually worried about when my son fell of the bed was concussion. It can cause swelling and in for treated real damage. So whilst Googling the symptons was kind of helpful, getting it first hand from the doctor is the wise thing to do. I could have ignored it all together and given that he stopped crying so quickly assumed that he hadn't really hurt himself.
However as a fearful parent even after 3 kids, you can never be too careful. Searching the net for answers provided many case studies and real life examples of what the symptons of concussion are eg drowsiness, constant crying, lack of balance, vomit etc. Whilst these are things that I can check for, a quick check from the doctor is a much wiser way to go. I did infact visit the doctor that afternoon and the checks where fine, I was also told to monitor for 24 hours just in case.
One thing that I didn't find on the net in my haste to find symptons was bleeding from the ears. Now if I had seen this it would obviously have been a serious sign, but I probably wouldn't have looked in his ears to see.
Searching the internet for answers has benefits in that it can give you a quick idea of what to look for but it can also scare the life out of you by filling you with many more questions and things to worry about. Situations get exagerated by parents or writers and can lead to silly decisions. As an example I once took my same son for an XRay after suspecting he had eaten part of a plastic magnet. After looking through his No 2s for a few days I could find it, so in a panic I thought Xray. My internet search explained to me the life threatening concsequences of eating magnets, partcularly for kids.
Turns out there was no sign of a magnet. So what I have listed below is a list of real website that you should visit should you need assistance. Remember that Victoria (Australia) also offers Nurses On Call by dialing 1300 60 60 24.
Good medical websites
Below is a list of safe sites that you can use:
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