Head injuries are common in babies, especially those who are just learning to move around and are still clumsy. These injuries can be internal and involve swelling or serious damage, or can be external with bleeding or scrapes. KidsHealth states that there is no reason to keep your baby awake after he hits his head. Let him sleep unless his doctor suggest otherwise and watch him for worrisome symptoms.
When to Be Concerned
If your baby experiences a loss of consciousness or is not moving normally, call her doctor. Watch her for profuse bleeding, excessive drowsiness, inconsolable crying, dizziness, weakness or vomiting. Her doctor may want you to take her to the emergency room for evaluation. According to KidsHealth, it is best to follow your instincts and call the doctor if you are worried at all.
Babycenter recommends waking your baby twice each night for two nights after he hits his head. This will help reassure you that there are no prolonged effects to his head injury. Check on him and make sure his limbs are not twitching and that there are no disturbances in his breathing or skin color.
If your baby's doctor is not concerned about her head injury, and if she is alert and behaving normally, apply an ice pack to the injured area for 20 minutes. Be sure to wrap the ice pack in a cloth or small towel first to prevent frostbite. If her injury is external, cover the scrape or cut with a bandage. Observe her behavior for 24 hours to make sure that no worrisome signs occur.
To help prevent head injuries, be sure to childproof your home. Cover sharp edges with padding and bumpers and remove any objects that could topple over and bump him on the head. Supervise him while he is playing and be sure to keep one hand on him if he is on his changing table or on another high piece of furniture.
If your baby's head injury is the result of a major collision rather than just a small bump, call her doctor even if she seems fine. Her doctor may want to ask you questions about the injury.