IMG_0998A few of our Right Start Moms have posted about child safety and how we must be vigilant with our children. From making sure all the power outlets are covered 10 Baby Proofing Must-Haves, to anchoring  our big screen TVs  securely A $5 Furniture Strap Prevented a Possible Tragedy , to watching our children when we are outside at family gatherings like a barbeque Child Safety: Burn Prevention , there are just so many things we need to pay attention to. Many of these posts have been personal stories where unthinkable events happened, but thankfully things turned out okay in the end…but as parents, we still feel extremely guilty.

I want to echo their recommendations and add a personal story about our oldest son. When he was 3 years old, he had been fighting a cold but beyond that, not too much seemed to be wrong except that he was a bit lethargic. It was not until we went to a park and he did not even want to play that we knew something was not right.

My wife took him to the doctor, which was just down the street, while I stayed with his twin sister and younger brother and continued our outing. When my wife called me about 30 minutes later, she and the doctor were heading over to the local hospital to get him admitted because he had developed pneumonia and was not getting enough oxygen. Long story short, he was air lifted to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, UT about an hour away because one of his lungs was completely filled and his other was halfway filled with fluid.  There he was sedated and placed on a respirator for two days to help his body rest. He was there for two weeks in total.  A quick plug to all children’s hospitals in the United States , please donate when you can. Your generous donations are greatly appreciated!

My wife and I still beat ourselves up because we did not recognize that our son was struggling to breathe for days before we took him to the doctor.  Because it had happened so gradually, the symptoms didn’t stand out – instead it just seemed liked his cold was lasting forever. Please learn from our experience that you need to benchmark your children. Our son was not a crier and he did not fuss much, so we missed the signs of him being increasingly more lethargic each day. And though the outcome was positive and he shows no long term effects from the ordeal, it could easily have been a devastating tragedy. So study your child while in good health so that you notice as soon as the subtle changes occur and seek medical advice when necessary.

2 Responses to Know Your Child’s Health Benchmark

  1. This is so true! And sometimes it takes a few extra call/visits to the doctor if you notice something is off. It’s important to be vigilant about your child’s health.

  2. It’s such a balance as a parent between the kids are rubber and bounce back mentality and the don’t be afraid to go to the doctor mentality. I’m so glad your son suffered no long term affects, David, and I’m so glad you and your wife trusted your gut that day.

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