Parenting is a challenge for sure, regardless of the day-to-day details, and it’s okay to not be perfect. However, one thing you’ll want to absolutely know as a parent or caretaker is what to do if your child is in an emergency. Accidents happen, and while nobody wants to have to deal with an emergency involving a child, it’s important to know what to do in a worst-case scenario. Here are a few first-aid tips every parent should know in case of an emergency, and a few things you should always do if a medical emergency comes up.

Get Someone To Call For Help

The first thing you should do in any emergency situation is call for help. However, sometimes you won’t be able to make the call yourself; you might be busy providing emergency care or you might just not have your cell phone in reach. In that case, designate a specific person to make the call for you – focusing on a specific person makes sure you avoid issues due to the bystander effect. More than 10 million people in the U.S. use hearing aids, so indicate visually who you’re asking for help as well by pointing or gesturing. The clearer you can communicate to bystanders that you need help, the better and the more likely it is you’ll actually get the help you need.

Provide Care Until Help Arrives

It can be scary to provide emergency care for anyone, let alone your own child, but doing so can make a huge difference in how the situation gets handled. For example, if someone does not perform CPR, the survival chances of a victim will decrease 7% in every single minute of delay. It’s important to act fast in emergency situations, but be careful when providing care. Improper CPR and other similar care can end up hurting someone.

That being said, not all emergency intervention will require CPR – some situations require less urgent intervention. For example, many cuts and similar wounds require only keeping the wound clean until help arrives. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year, with half of those victims being children, so knowing how to help in these cases is just as important.

Know About Medical History

Finally, when help does arrive, it’s important to know exactly what your child’s medical history is as accurately as possible. Information like your child’s blood type, their medication plans, and what medical devices they use can all be helpful for EMTs. If your child has any medical devices, be sure to bring them with you to wherever treatment will be provided. In 2015, retail spending for durable medical equipment – which includes contact lenses, eyeglasses, hearing aids, wheelchairs, mobility aids, and more – reached $48.5 billion. Medical equipment is fairly common, but can sometimes be forgotten in the panic of an emergency situation. Keep track of medical devices and have answers ready for nurses, doctors, or EMTs who might ask you about your child’s medical history.

Being ready for emergencies as a parent can be a bit stressful, but it’s better to have the knowledge you need to help your child in a worst-case scenario than to be caught unaware. Use these tips to make sure your child stays as safe and as healthy as possible in dangerous circumstances.