A father whose baby recently almost lost its toe shares advice on how to protect your children from this common hazard.
A Kansas father’s story has been trending after his infant daughter had a seriously close call with an all-too common hazard. According to a report from the Huffington Post, the man’s daughter nearly lost her toe at the age of 19 weeks after getting trapped in a hair tourniquet.
If this is your first time hearing about a hair tourniquet, you’re not alone. They are tricky to avoid and can evade detection until it’s almost too late. A hair tourniquet is pretty much what it sounds like – when a thread of hair gets tangled around a body part and cuts off blood circulation. If left untended for too long, they can result in a nasty infection.
When Scott Walker and his wife heard their daughter Molly crying, they didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary. The 19-month-old kept at it, however, and became agitated and overheated. When her mother Jessica removed the baby’s socks, she found a strand of hair wrapped tightly around one Molly’s toes.
Scott praised Jessica’s quick thinking as she safely removed the hair tourniquet from the infant’s toe. The hair was already slicing through the poor baby’s skin, and could have been much worse if it had gone unnoticed.
Doctors say that hair tourniquets are most common with penises, toes, and fingers in newborns. Typically, the hair comes from the mother, who is more likely to shed a few strands after giving birth. As babies flex and curl their fingers and toes, hair that was stuck to their socks or clothes can get unintentionally wrapped around an appendage.
If a hair tourniquet gets too tight, it continually slices through the skin each time tension is focused on a certain point. Doctors have had to cut deep into the skin to ensure that all of the hair from a tourniquet is removed to keep it from reaching the bone.
While hair tourniquets present a real risk, they are relatively easy to notice and prevent if you remain aware.