Child in a Bike Accident? How to Help Before Professionals Step In

If you're a parent of a child who enjoys riding his or her bicycle, you can be almost certain that the child will have some type of accident in the future. Ideally, it will be something minor, like a tumble onto grass that results in some grass-stained clothing. However, there's also a chance that your child could be hurt enough that you need to seek urgent care of a hospital emergency room. In other cases, the accident will have results that fall somewhere in the middle—and that's where your pediatrician comes in.

If your child's accident doesn't require immediate medical attention but you still want to see a doctor, promptly scheduling a pediatric visit is a good idea. Here are some things that the pediatrician will assess.

Look for Bumps & Bruises

Fortunately, you can care for most bumps and bruises that your child sustains in a bike accident at home, but it's a good idea to visit the pediatrician if you're concerned about anything. For example, the swelling in a swollen knee will commonly go down in time, but you might notice that your child's knee is still swollen and sore to the touch a few days after the bike accident. Sometimes, swelling can suggest a serious injury below the surface, such as a broken bone. The doctor can send the child for an X-ray if he or she, too, is concerned about the swelling.

Check if They Got a Concussion

If the child wasn't wearing a helmet or perhaps the helmet came off during the bike accident, he or she may have sustained a head injury. The signs of a concussion are often apparent quickly, but this isn't always the case. Additionally, your child may try to hide the signs of a concussion, such as headaches and nausea, out of fear that he or she will be in trouble for failing to wear a helmet. If you're concerned that your child may have sustained a minor concussion, a trip to the pediatrician is a good idea.

Monitor Their Abrasions

Skin abrasions are common in bicycle crashes, and can occur on knees, elbows, forearms, hands, and many other parts of your child's body. Cleaning the abrasions and bandaging them is something that you can do, although you'll need to continuously look at these areas to ensure that they're healing. If an infection is present, the abrasion could appear red and may seem a little swollen. You should always visit the pediatrician if you believe that your child has an infection from a bike accident abrasion.

To learn more about how to handle bike accidents, contact local pediatricians through sites like