A fracture is a break, usually in a bone. If the broken bone punctures the skin, it is called an open or compound fracture. Fractures commonly happen because of falls or sports injuries. Overuse can cause stress fractures, which are very small cracks in the bone.
If a young child refuses to put weight on an arm or leg after an accident, won’t move the arm or leg, or you can clearly see a deformity, assume the child has a broken bone and get medical help.
Symptoms of a fracture are:
Out-of-place or misshapen limb or joint
Swelling, bruising or bleeding
Numbness and tingling
Limited mobility or inability to move a limb
You need to get medical care right away for any fracture. The patient may need to wear a cast or splint. Sometimes he or she may need surgery to put in plates, pins or screws to keep the bone in place.
Even though other broken bones may not be medical emergencies, they still deserve medical attention.
- Wear protective gear while skiing, biking, roller blading, and participating in contact sports. This includes helmets, elbow pads, knee pads, and shin pads.
- Create a safe home for young children. Gate stairways and keep windows closed.
- Teach children how to be safe and look out for themselves.
- Supervise children carefully. There is no substitute for supervision, no matter how safe the environment or situation appears to be.
- Prevent falls by not standing on chairs, counter tops, or other unstable objects.
- Remove throw rugs and electrical cords from floor surfaces