Skip To The Main Content
 | Find A Physician | Careers

Common Childhood Injuries and Poisonings

  • Superficial Injuries Overview

  • Minor Injuries Overview

  • Abrasions

    An abrasion is a superficial rub or wearing off of the skin, usually caused by a scrape or a "brush burn." Abrasions are usually minor injuries that can be treated at home.

  • Animal Bites

    Detailed information on animal bites and rabies, including symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention

  • Avoiding Eye Injuries in Children

    Children should wear protective eyewear during sports and recreational activities. In the classroom, they should wear eye protection when doing lab experiments.

  • Bites and Stings

    Detailed information on insect bites, including bee stings, flea bites, mite bites, chigger bites, spider bites, tick bites, and lyme disease

  • Blisters in Children

    Detailed information on blisters, including cause, first-aid, and treatment

  • Bruises

    A bruise is a collection of blood underneath the skin that is caused by trauma to an area of the body. Sometimes, enough bleeding occurs so that a lump also forms.

  • Facts About Burn Injury

    Hot tap water burns cause more deaths and hospitalizations than burns from any other hot liquids.

  • Cat Scratch Disease in Children

    Cat scratches and bites can cause cat scratch disease, a bacterial infection carried in cat saliva. Young kittens younger than a year old are more likely to scratch, increasing the likelihood of infection.

  • Childproof Your Home for Poisons

    Always remember that ordinary products you use each day around the home can become dangerous poisons in the hands of a child.

  • Corneal Abrasions

    A corneal abrasion is a scratch or injury to the cornea, the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of the eye. This is a very common occurrence in children.

  • Cosmetic Safety for Adolescent Contact Lens Wearers

    Cosmetics are among some of the most common sources of problems for contact lens wearers. Misusing cosmetics can lead to severe adverse reactions.

  • Cuts and Wounds of the Face

    Most minor cuts or wounds to the face can be handled at home with simple first-aid treatment.

  • Cuts and Wounds of the Nose

    Most minor nose wounds can be handled at home, but a wound or bruise that also involves one or both eyes requires immediate medical attention.

  • Treatment for Dog and Cat Bites and Scratches

    For a superficial bite from a healthy household pet, wash the wound with soap and water under pressure from a faucet for at least five minutes.

  • Emergency Contact Information

    In an emergency, it is easy to "forget" even the most well-known information. That's why it is crucial to complete the information in this form for each member of your household.

  • Cuts and Wounds of the External Ear

    Any wound to the ear cartilage that is more than just a superficial cut or laceration should be seen by a doctor to decide if stitches are needed.

  • Fractures of the Orbit

    The orbit is the bony structure around the eye. A blow to the face can break one or more of these bones and can result in severe eye injury and damage.

  • Eyelid Lacerations

    Eyelid lacerations are cuts to the eyelid caused by trauma. Your child's doctor will examine the eye closely to make sure no damage has occurred to the eye itself.

  • Eye Trauma

    Detailed information on eye trauma in children

  • Superficial Injuries to the Face and Head

    Children are more likely to end up with a cut or scrape on the head or face. One reason is that children's sense of balance isn't completely adjusted.

  • Facts About Poisons

    About 60 percent of poisonings in children involve items other than medicines—plants, cleaning products, cosmetics, pesticides, paints, and solvents.

  • First Aid for Poisonings

    Sometimes accidental poisonings can be treated in the home under the direction of a poison control center or your child's doctor. At other times, emergency medical care is necessary.

  • Children and Fleas, Mites, and Chiggers

    Fleas, mites, and chiggers often bite humans, but aren't poisonous. It's sometimes difficult to assess which type of insect caused the bite, or if the rash is caused by poison ivy or other skin conditions.

  • Frostbite in Children

    Detailed information on frostbite, including symptoms and what to do if frostbite occurs

  • Glossary - Common Childhood Injuries and Poisonings

    Glossary of terms relating to common poisonings and injuries of children

  • Human Bites

    Detailed information on human bites, including treatment for human bites

  • Home Page - Common Childhood Injuries and Poisonings

    Detailed information on the common poisonings and injuries of children

  • Insects in the Ear

    Don't attempt to remove the insect by poking it with a cotton swab. This may push the insect farther into the ear or cause damage to the middle ear and eardrum.

  • Syrup of Ipecac

    Syrup of ipecac is a substance that causes vomiting. It is no longer recommended as a first aid for poisoning because it may not be effective and can even interfere with other remedies.

  • Lacerations Without Stitches

    A laceration is tear or opening in the skin caused by an injury. Some lacerations are small and need only minor treatment at home.

  • Lacerations With Stitches

    Stitches, also called sutures, are special types of thread that hold the edges of a wound together while it heals.

  • Lead Poisoning in Children

    Lead poisoning is a totally preventable disease. Children ages 1 to 3 who live in low-income housing built before 1978 are especially at risk.

  • Minor Problem vs. a True Emergency

    In general, take your child to an emergency room after an injury anytime you think the problem may need urgent attention.

  • Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Children

    Carbon monoxide is a poisonous, colorless, tasteless, odorless gas. It is the most common cause of accidental poisoning-related deaths and is often called "the silent killer."

  • Cuts and Wounds of the Mouth and Lips

    The gums, tongue, and lips have a rich blood supply and when cuts occur, these areas may bleed excessively.

  • Mushroom Poisoning in Children

    Early symptoms of mushroom poisoning include stomach cramps, vomiting, and watery or bloody diarrhea. If your child has any of these symptoms, call your child's doctor immediately.

  • Muscle and Joint Injuries

    Detailed information on muscle and joint injuries, including prevention

  • Nursemaid's Elbow

    Nursemaid's elbow occurs when the radius—one of the bones in the forearm—slips out of place from where it normally attaches to the elbow joint.

  • Online Resources - Common Childhood Injuries and Poisonings

    List of online resources to find additional information on common poisonings and injuries of children

  • Poisons and Children

    Detailed information on poisoning, preventing poisoning and how to respond in an emergency

  • Preventing Injuries--How You Can Help Your Child

    You can help your child by being prepared and preventing injuries from occurring. It is important to take charge of your child's health and follow a program designed to help you and your family stay healthy and safe.

  • Puncture Wounds

    A puncture wound is a deep wound made by a sharp object. This type of wound may become infected easily because dirt and germs are carried deep into the tissues.

  • Rabies in Children

    Rabies occurs mainly in skunks, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, and bats. In some areas, these wild animals infect domestic cats, dogs, and livestock.

  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in Children

    This infection is caused by a tick bite. Common symptoms are fever and a non-itchy rash that usually starts on the hands, arms, feet, and legs seven to 10 days after the bite.

  • Topic Index - Common Childhood Injuries and Poisonings

    Detailed information on the common poisonings and injuries of children

  • Small Cuts and Scrapes

    Wash the cut area well with soap and water, but do not scrub the wound. A dirty cut or scrape that is not thoroughly cleaned can cause scarring.

  • Snake Bites and Children

    Treat all bites as if they were from a venomous snake and get your child to a hospital emergency room as quickly as possible.

  • Spider Bites in Children

    In the United States, two spiders that can cause serious problems are the black widow and the brown recluse spiders. Both of these spiders are found in warm climates.

  • Splinters

    A splinter is a sharp sliver of wood, glass, or other debris that is lodged underneath the skin. Removal of small, superficial splinters can usually be done at home.

  • Accident Statistics

    Injury is the leading cause of death in children and young adults. Falls are the leading cause of unintentional injury for children.

  • Insect Stings

    Yellow jackets cause most of the allergic reactions to stings. Fire ants, found in southern states, can sting multiple times—and the sites are more likely to become infected.

  • Injuries to the Teeth

    The injury may be to a primary tooth or a permanent tooth. A tooth can be cracked, chipped, or totally detached from its socket.

  • Tennis Elbow

    Tennis elbow is a repetitive stress injury of the elbow that occurs when the muscles and tendons in the elbow area are torn or damaged.

  • Thermal Injuries

    Detailed information on thermal injuries in children

  • Tick Bite Diseases

    Ticks feed on human blood. Most tick bites are harmless, but some species can cause serious diseases.

  • Why Children Bite

    A young child may bite out of frustration or when under stress. Biting may also be an attempt to gain power—or just a way of exploring the world.

  • Minor Cuts, Scrapes, and Skin Wounds

    Detailed information on minor cuts, scrapes, and skin wounds in children

  • Chemical Burns of the Eye

    A chemical burn occurs when a child gets any type of chemical in his or her eye. This is a medical emergency, and the child should receive immediate medical care.

  • Anatomy of the Eye

    The structures of the eye include the cornea, iris, pupil, macula, retina, and the optic nerve.

  • Facts About Animal Bites

    Whether the bite is from a family pet or an animal in the wild, scratches and bites can become infected and cause scarring. Animals can also carry diseases that can be transmitted through a bite.

  • First-Aid Kit

    Detailed list of recommended items for a household first-aid kit

  • Foreign Bodies in the Ear, Nose, and Airway

    Children usually place things in their ears because they are bored, curious, or copying other children. Some objects may cause no symptoms, but other objects, such as food and insects, may cause pain in the ear, redness, or drainage.

  • Foreign Bodies in the Eye

    The foreign object may be in the conjunctiva—the thin membrane that covers the actual eye—or in the cornea, the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of the eye.

  • Household Safety Checklist

    Use this list as part of a thorough safety check of your home. It can help prevent accidents and injuries.

  • Insect Bites and Children

    Detailed information on insect bites, including fleas, mites, chiggers, and ticks

  • Nosebleeds

    Nosebleeds are fairly common in children, especially in dry climates or during the winter months, when dry heat inside homes and buildings can cause drying, cracking, or crusting inside the nose.

  • Sprains and Strains in Children

    Strains, sprains, and bruises make up the majority of sports injuries. Treatment for a strain or sprain depends on the child's age and the extent of the injury.

  • Lyme Disease in Children

    Lyme disease is the leading cause of all insect-borne illness in the United States. It is a year-round problem, although April through October is considered tick season.

  • Sunburn and Children

    Protect your child from the sun. Up to 80 percent of total lifetime sun exposure occurs in the first 18 years of life.

  • Tick Bites

    Ticks attach themselves to the scalp, behind the ear, in the armpit and groin, and also between fingers and toes. Tick bites often occur at night and are more common in the spring and summer months.