Connection between your well-being and child safety
Taking care of yourself is a vital part of keeping your child safe. Although accidents can occur at any time, most happen during times of excess stress, such as when:
- Parents and children are hungry and tired, especially right after work and before dinner.
- Another baby is expected.
- There is an illness or death in the family.
- Relationship problems develop.
- Major changes in the routine or environment occur, such as when a child’s caregiver changes, or when moving to a new house, or even going on vacation.
Recognize the signs of stress and what situations cause it. Be extra vigilant during these times and take care of yourself and your personal relationships.
All parents have times when they feel exhausted, frustrated, angry, sad, or overwhelmed. Recognize that this is a normal part of being human and a parent. But if these feelings become too much for you to handle alone, keep your child safe by getting help. For example, when your emotions are too much for you to handle alone, you may not have the energy or desire to watch your child as closely as you should. Some parents injure their children when their emotions cause them to shake, hit, or push them. This can result in such problems as shaken baby syndrome, which can cause permanent brain damage or even death.
Call 911 right away if you feel you are about to injure yourself or your child.
Places to go for help include:
- Your family health professional (such as a family medicine doctor).
- A pediatrician.
- A licensed mental health counselor.
- Your local hospital.
- Parenting organizations.