Say No to Shocks: Electricity Safety Tips For Kids by Dr. Chetan Ginigeri

6 min read

Written by Dr. Chetan Ginigeri

Dr. Chetan Ginigeri

A passionate Child Health Advocate, Paediatric Emergency and ICU consultant, Child Safety Expert, Author, and Teambuilder – Dr. Chetan Ginigeri wears different hats according to the role necessit More

Electric Shocks for kids
One of the greatest worries of parents of toddlers is to protect their kids from electric shocks. Parents must be fully aware of electricity safety tips for kids and take every move the secure their house to prevent shocks to their little ones. As soon as babies start crawling and walking, they start experimenting with everything they get in their way. Their first instinct will be to put it in their mouth. Thus growing kids often suffer from upset tummies and diarrhea. But getting electrical wires or batteries in their reach can lead to more serious results.

And this could be fatal if your kid gets his/her reach up to the electrical sockets. Thus training your kid about electricity, how it works, and electrical safety is very important. But at first, you will have to install child-safe electrical sockets and switches in your house. Here are some tips for how to childproof your home and how to educate your kid about electric safety.

In This Article

What Are the Dangers of Electricity For Children?

An electric shock can be very dangerous for even adults. For kids, even a little bit of electric shock can cause trauma, cardiac arrest, and even death. The level of danger of electricity increases with the increase of its voltage, the strength of the current, and the length of time of its contact with the body.

The dangerous effects of electricity can be:

  • Cardiac arrest as the shock directly affects the heart and disrupts heartbeat and constricts blood vessels.
  • Burns on external organs.
  • Severe burns and injuries of internal organs when current passes through the body for a long time.
  • Injuries caused due to falling suddenly after getting unconscious due to electrical shocks.
  • Stiffness of muscle can lead to choking and the child could not breathe.
  • The sudden shock can affect the brain and lead to acute trauma in the child.

So the risk factor of electric shocks is very high for not only the kids but also for adults. So you need to make your house shockproof.

[Read : Burns in Babies: Treatment and Home Remedies]

How to Childproof Your Home Against Electrical Dangers?

Childproof Your Home Against Electrical Dangers

To childproof your home against electrical dangers you will have to do the following:

  • Use childproof sockets or plastic socket caps or covers to prevent the child from putting fingers in the socket
  • Put the switch off when you are not present. Do not put your phone or speaker in charge and leave the room while your kid is there.
  • Keep electric cords away from kids’ reach. They will try to chew them. Thus, even if the child does not get an electric shock, they can for sure get diarrhea or you get a damaged cord.
  • Cover the power strips in your office or TV area.
  • Throw old and frayed wires as they can lead to short circuits, damage of the appliances, and of course electrical shocks.
  • Install GFCIs or ground fault circuit interrupters at home. It is a fast-acting circuit breaker. It will stop the flow of electricity if there is any shift in voltages.

Electricity Safety Tips For Kids

Electricity Safety Tips For Kids

Here are some tips you should follow in your daily life to secure your kid from electric shocks:

  • Keep small metal objects away from kid’s reach as they try to plug them into sockets
  • Install sockets at a height where kids cannot easily reach
  • Apply tape or cover the unused plug holes
  • Never put your razor or hairdryer on and plugged in in front of your kid
  • Prevent kids from climbing trees or fences that have electrical lines nearer
  • Helium gas balloons and the strings of kites can conduct electricity so do not let your kid play amidst lightning and electric cables nearby.
  • Notice that your kid is not going near any electric substation while playing outside.

How to Educate Kids About Electric Safety?

Educate Kids About Electric Safety

Prevention is the best cure. You cannot be present all the time to check on your kid. But if you teach electric safety to your kid then they will keep a safe distance from danger.

Here is how you should teach your kid about electric safety:

  • You need to make your little one understand why they should not touch any electrical device without you. Mere scolding or saying them a no will increase their curiosity more.
  • Say that water is a very good conductor of electricity and 70% of our body is nothing but water. Thus electricity can cause us harm.
  • But it may get difficult to make the kid understand this problem. Thus you can take help from animated videos on electric safety on YouTube.
  • You can use colorful books on electric safety for kids also.
  • Kids touch electrical devices out of curiosity. So you can demonstrate what is inside of a chord or plug to satiate their curiosity.

First Aid For Electric Shocks in Kids

CPR for electric shock

You will have to show the presence of mind and immediate action in case of electric shocks. Here is how can you lessen the damage of an electric shock by first aid.

  • At first, try to break the circuit of the current. That means you will have to switch off the current or fuse it.
  • If that is not possible then try to keep your child away from the electric source. But you should not do it with bare hands otherwise you too will get the shock.
  • Use any object that is not a conductor of electricity such as a wooden stick, plastic bat or broom, notebook, etc, and push your kid’s hand out of the socket by it.
  • If this is not working and you will have to touch your kid to save him/her then put on rubber or plastic shoes and gloves before touching.
  • After rescuing the kid check his/her condition. If the kid is not breathing then immediately start giving CPR.
  • For CPR place one hand on the center of the chest and the other hand above it and press it in a rhythm. Occasionally blow air through the mouth of the kid.
  • Do not let the temperature of the child fall. Rub the hands and toes continuously until the ambulance arrives
  • Do not try to remove cloths and clean the runs on your own, you can make the problem worse. Let the doctor do it
  • In case of face burn, you can apply a clean dry cotton cloth to it to prevent bleeding

So following these electricity safety tips for kids and educating and informing your kid about electricity at the right time can save your kid from any unfortunate accident. And in case it happens, do not panic, call an ambulance and give the necessary first aid to the kid till help arrives.

[Read : CPR in Babies]

FAQ’s

1. How Do You Tell If a Child Has Been Electrocuted?

The symptoms of electric shock are numbness, muscle spasms, breathing problem, hearing problem, loss of consciousness, etc.

2. Can a Child Get Electrocuted From a Plug Socket?

Yes, children often tend to put their fingers in the electric socket and get electrocuted. To prevent this use childproof caps to cover those sockets when you are not using them.

3. Are the UK Plugs Safe For Kids?

Yes, UK plugs are very much safe and child friendly. They have a shutter that covers the socket. When you push the plugin then only the shutter shifts. But using child-proof socket caps is the best solution.

Read Also: Childproofing Your Home: Do It The Right Way by Dr. Chetan Ginigeri

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Dr. Chetan Ginigeri,MBBS(JIPMER), MD (PGIMER), Fellowship PICU (Kings College London)
Head of Dept – Paediatric & Neonatal services, Aster CMI Hospital
17 years of experience

Dr Chetan Ginigeri is an experienced Pediatric Intensivist with national and international training. With 15 years of experience, he is one among very few Intensivists in India trained to take care of children who need/had organ transplants. He has been responsible for coordinating the Pediatric Organ Transplant program.Read more.

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