Tag Archive | "emergency preparedness"

Helping Your Toddler Prepare For An Emergency


Being prepared for any emergency is something every individual must learn, including toddlers. Helping your toddler prepare for an emergency is not as hard as you think. Here are some basic tips about emergency preparedness for children.

Talk To Your Toddler

Instead of protecting your toddler from possible tragedies, educate your toddler about the different kinds of disasters. This is the best way to alleviate his fears. Talk about the difference between a problem and an emergency. A problem is something that he needs help with but does not need emergency services while an emergency requires immediate assistance. Encourage him to ask questions about fires, floods, earthquakes, etc. and make sure you answer them as clearly as possible. Provide various scenarios and ask your toddler how he would react to it. For instance, you can say “What would you do if there is an earthquake?” or “Who will you call if there is an intruder in the house?”. Doing this will help you evaluate what your toddler already knows as well as give him appropriate actions he must do during an emergency.

Come Up With A Plan

Plan escape routes with your toddler. Determine how you can get out of your house quickly, which exits to use and who to call in case of an emergency. Assign a meeting place where everyone can gather in case there is a need to evacuate and do a head count to ensure all members of the family are present.

Prepare An Emergency Kit Together

Organize an emergency kit with your toddler. Show him each item and explain its purposes. Items that must be present in an emergency kit include:

  • Flashlights
  • Battery-operated radio
  • Extra batteries
  • First-aid kit
  • Bottled water
  • Cash
  • Important documents stored in a water-resistant and fireproof container (e.g. birth and marriage certificates, passports, insurance papers)
  • 3-day supply of non-perishable foods for each family member (formula milk, canned soup, vegetables, meat and juice, granola bars, candies, dry pasta, crackers and cereals)
  • Extra clothes
  • Blankets
  • Sanitation items (diaper, toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet paper, wet wipes, hand sanitizer, etc.)
  • A few books and toys

Practice

It is very important that you do practice runs on a regular basis. Act out what should be done if an emergency came up. Practice going to your basement to prepare for a tornado. Teach him to crawl out of your house, get under a sturdy table during an earthquake or how to tell if someone is breathing so he can pass the information to the 911 operator.

Conduct a surprise drill. Being under pressure is the best way to determine whether your toddler truly knows how to act during an emergency. Play “Black Out” one evening. Turn off all the lights in your home and get out flashlights. Spend at least 2 hours without electricity to see what your toddler would do.

It is normal for your toddler to feel scared during an emergency. But, by preparing your toddler at an early age, your toddler will likely be less anxious because he knows how to react.

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