Letting a Baby Sleep after a Major Fall – Safe or Not?

Fact Checked

Children, most especially babies and toddlers, fall most of the time. This can occur while they are practicing walking, running around the house or playing with other kids. But, if your child hits his or her head hard that you can hear a “thud” sound so loudly, particularly when he/she falls off the stairs or bumps hard on the wall, it might mean something more serious.

Does your child feel sleepy after a serious fall?

As parents, it is a cause of concern, because internal injuries might be present on the child without you knowing it. But what complicates the situation is that a child could feel sleepy after a major fall: this is another concern for parents, so it is important to assess on the child’s status immediately. But most importantly, it is not safe to put a baby to sleep after the incident, because this is considered as one of the danger signs of concussion.

What is a concussion?

A concussion is a result of a severe blow to the head, which could alter the normal functioning of the brain. Concussion is a traumatic injury to the brain often accompanied by headaches, dizziness, as well as alterations in balance and coordination. But since in our case, the victim is a child, these symptoms cannot be communicated verbally to us. This means that as parents, it is our responsibility to watch out for signs of concussions, one of which is sleepiness.

Call emergency assistance if your child shows the following symptoms:

Aside from sleepiness, here are the other signs to watch out for.

–        The child becomes unconscious immediately after falling or several minutes after the incident.

–        The child’s skin and lips change in color.

–        The child vomits.

–        The child looks confused and drowsy.

–        The child’s pupils are dilated and unequal in size.

–        The child becomes distressed.

–        The child suffers from difficulty of breathing.

Important consideration: If the child is alert and very responsive, this might mean that the fall did not cause any serious problems to the brain. But even if the child does not show the following signs right after the bump or fall, it is necessary to observe him for a couple of days just to be sure.

The only concern of sleeping after a fall is if the child does this right after the incident. But there is actually no need to prevent him from sleeping or taking a nap, especially after a minor fall incident. As a precaution, though, try to wake the child up after a one to two hours to ensure that he is still responding normally to your calls.

Related Video about Concussions on Children:

[youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ-qbs715cE” width=”220″]

Sources:

“Is it safe to let my baby fall asleep after he’s bumped his head?” Baby Centre. Retrieved online on August 3, 2014 from http://www.babycentre.co.uk/x1048727/is-it-safe-to-let-my-baby-fall-asleep-after-hes-bumped-his-head

“Concussion.” Mayo Clinic. Retrieved online on August 3, 2014 from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/concussion/basics/definition/con-20019272

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