Head Injury

If your child recently experienced head trauma either through a fall or a collision, the questions below will help you to determine if you need to seek emergency care for your child.

  • Did your child cry right away? YES
  • Did they recognize you as their parent? YES
  • Have they vomited since the accident? NO
  • Do you see bleeding from the ears or nose? NO
  • Are they able to walk and talk normally now? YES
  • Is there rapid and continued swelling ABOVE THE EAR? NO
  • Did your child have a seizure or loss of consciousness? NO
  • Is your child either very irritable or very sleepy?  NO

If your answers are DIFFERENT than those listed, call the office to discuss care immediately.

If your answers are the SAME as those above, there is no cause for immediate concern.

Monitor him or her closely for the next several days, and if any concerning symptoms such as those listed above develop, call the office to discuss further care.

More Tips:

  • The amount of swelling of the forehead is not correlated with severity or internal bleeding; this area of the scalp has a great blood supply and as a result swells up rapidly.
  • Also, be warned the swelling and blood may, via gravity, appear under the eyes the next morning, making your child appear to have a black eye.  Again, this is normal.
  • Waking children up after a head injury is rarely necessary if they match the answers above.  But if it was a severe blow or they just seem “not right,” then wake your child up every hour for the next 2–3 hours. Once they are noted to awaken, you can let them go right back to sleep.

Note: If your child is under 6 months and had a significant head injury, these questions do NOT apply. Call us for guidance immediately.