Grandparents play a special role in the lives of their grandchildren. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, almost 3 million grandparents are raising their grandchildren. And while a grandparent’s love is timeless, several child safety recommendations have changed over the years.
Here’s the latest advice from the American Academy of Pediatrics on how to handle common health concerns:
- Safe sleep. Grandparents may have put their own babies to sleep on their bellies, but to reduce the risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), pediatricians now recommend babies be put to sleep on their backs.
- Reducing Fever. Fever is one of the most common conditions of childhood. Doctors advise helping a feverish child feel more comfortable by removing a layer of clothing and encouraging fluids. If recommended by the child’s pediatrician, ibuprofen or acetaminophen can also be given.
- Care for Cuts and Scrapes. A kiss may be all that’s needed for a “boo-boo.” But for a small wound that’s bleeding, pediatricians suggest direct pressure over the wound for 5-10 minutes (don’t peek!), a gentle wash with soap and water, then a small amount of antibacterial ointment and a bandage.
If caring for grandchildren in your home, childproof your environment and secure your own personal medications by placing them up, out of sight and out of reach of grandchildren.