It’s scary to imagine a situation where you might not be able to speak for your child in a crisis. But if there’s anything first responders and other professionals would need to know about your child in an emergency, an engraved medical id can ensure that nothing is overlooked. It’s an important way to keep your child safe.
If your child has any significant medical issues, mention it on an ID bracelet or necklace. That includes chronic conditions like diabetes or asthma; environmental risks like food or medication allergies; and serious ongoing worries like organ transplants or childhood cancer. If you’re not sure, ask your pediatrician what kind of information needs to be with your child at all times.
There may be issues that aren’t specifically medical but would be helpful on an ID, such as intellectual or developmental disabilities. Similarly, kids with mental health diagnoses like anxiety, PTSD, and depression need informed support. Give helpers quick awareness if your child has a vision or hearing impairment, or anything else that may make treatment a little trickier.
Your child’s prescriptions may interact with drugs given at a hospital emergency room, so it’s essential that a list of those medications be available to anyone who may be responsible for treatment. Again, ask your pediatricians which ones most need to be shared on an ID. If your child will need an epinephrine auto-injector in the case of an allergic reaction, indicate that as well and where one can be found in your child’s belongings.
You’ll also want to include emergency contact information so that you can be located if your child is in peril—or another responsible adult if you too are affected by the incident. Unpleasant though it may be, this is the kind of thinking ahead that parents are called on to do for their children.