Why newborns should never be left alone with toddlers

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The little girl was just trying to be a good sister and comfort her newborn brother...

Parents tend to assume that falling accidents only happen when a baby is able to flip or knows how to crawl. This is why there are so many warnings to remind us never to leave babies unattended on an elevated area like the bed or a changing table.

However, there are external factors that could lead to accidents involving dropping a newborn baby, like an overtired mum or an unexpected fall. In this case, it was a non-malicious, unintended accident caused by the twin newborns' two-year-old toddler sister.

Leaving Newborn Babies Unattended with Young Children

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In the short video below, a pair of newborn twins are seen lying down on the bed with their two-year-old sister watching them. Their parents were nowhere to be seen and there was no other adult together with them in the room. 

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One of the twins started crying. Acting on instinct, the two-year-old sister went over and tried to comfort him. But when her brother continued to cry, she bent down to pick him up after seeing other adults do it many times before.

She Was Only Trying to Help

But she ended up lifting him up the wrong way (not her fault) in the video. Without supporting his neck and back she hoisted her newborn brother and flipped him up and over on to her shoulder. Now, she's pretty small herself. With the combined weight of her younger brother and the force she used to flip him on to her shoulder, both of them ended up falling backwards. She ended up dropping the newborn baby, and he fell head first.

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The cries that rang out after she dropped him were bloodcurdling. Bewildered, his sister sat there and tried to carry him again to comfort him when a lady rushed in screaming at the terrified little girl.

Video of the 2-Year-Old Sister Dropping a Newborn Baby

Effects of Dropping a Baby Accidentally

I cannot help feeling sorry for the little girl because none of this was her fault. Still, this scenario is such a common thing in households all over the world.

Yes, you might argue it is neglect. But sometimes this is the result of not having enough helping hands around the house when you're too preoccupied with other tasks and think that nothing will happen if you leave young children unattended. It happens to ALL OF US. Unfortunately, dropping a newborn baby has its consequences.

When the soft head of the baby strikes a hard surface, the delicate, developing brain may hit the skull. This causes blood vessels to rupture resulting in internal bleeding – also known as a hemorrhage. Even if there is no bleeding, there is still the risk of swelling, which may create pressure in the brain.

In worst case scenarios, a concussion could happen, which could affect the functions and development of the brain.

When to Rush Your Baby to the Hospital

Take your child to the hospital immediately if they are showing any of the symptoms below:

  • convulsions
  • drowsiness
  • vomiting
  • unconsciousness
  • a visible bruise or swelling in the head region
  • bleeding from nose, ears or mouth

If there is an incident where someone ends up dropping a newborn baby accidentally, please remain calm – even if you're anything but.

Take a deep breath, get over the panic and try to calm them down like you would if they were waking up and screaming in the middle of the night. 

If your baby calms down after a few minutes, and if he is responsive, smiling and behaving normally, then he's probably alright.

Do a quick once-over: Check for bumps, bruises, bleeding and move their arms and legs. If it wasn't a fall from a considerable height, then they should be okay. But to be sure, you can always bring them to the doctor to have a more thorough check-up.

 

Source: WebMD, FeedyTV, Fatherly

Read also: How to handle head injuries in babies

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