how do you sew a baby cot sheet (2)

What To Do When A Baby Falls Off The Bed?

First, don’t panic. If there are signs of distress, staying calm will make them easier to address. It’s possible the fall could cause your baby to lose consciousness.

They may appear limp or sleeping, then usually resume consciousness rather quickly. Regardless, this is a medical emergency. If your baby appears to have a serious head injury, such as visible signs of bleeding or unconsciousness, call 911 or local emergency services immediately.

Don’t move your baby unless they’re at immediate risk for further injury. However, if your child is vomiting or appears to be having a seizure, turn them on their side, keeping the neck straight.

If you see bleeding, apply pressure gently with gauze or a clean towel or cloth until help arrives.

If your baby doesn’t appear severely injured, gently pick them up and comfort them. They’ll likely be scared and alarmed. While comforting, look at their head to inspect for visible signs of injury.

You should call your doctor after any fall from a bed if your baby is under one year old.

If you don’t immediately see any signs of injury, put your child at ease. Once your baby has calmed, you’ll also want to inspect their body for any injuries or bruising.

You cover all the sharp edges on your furniture. You plug all the electrical sockets, latch all the drawers and block off the staircase. You’ve baby-proofed your house to the best of your ability.

But, inevitably, the day will come when your child gets hurt.

For some parents, that day comes when they turn their back to grab a diaper and the baby rolls right off the changing table. Or they’re carrying a baby along with a load of laundry down the stairs and trip and fall.

In this gut-wrenching moment of panic, you might be inclined to immediately pick your baby up off the floor and rush to the emergency room. But take a moment to breathe and observe first.

Sometimes babies need emergency medical attention after falling, and sometimes they’re just fine. You, of course, want to be sure your baby gets the medical attention they need, but you also don’t want to put them through unnecessary stress – and rack up medical bills — from an unneeded ER visit.

  • Children older than four months are more likely to move, roll and turn, which can be risked falling out from the bed.
  • If your child falls out of bed and has symptoms of drowsiness, vomiting, spitting up, or if the child is whining or won’t wake up, you should take the child to see a doctor immediately.
  • The Bed should not be higher than 120 cm. The gaps between your child’s bed railings should be no wider than 6 cm.


It is not uncommon for young children to fall out of bed, especially babies over four months old and have already become mobile. Parents are usually very frightened when this happens to a small child. 

Some babies will cry loudly when they fall out of bed, but then they will quickly cheer up and will soon return to their usual high spirits. In such cases, there is no need to worry. If this does happen to your child and then they have any of the following symptoms, take them to see a doctor immediately:

  • If your child falls out of bed and has symptoms of drowsiness, vomiting, spitting up, or if the child is whining or won’t wake up, this could be a sign of brain injury, and you should take the child to see a doctor immediately.
  • If your child has been cut or is bleeding, take them to see a doctor immediately.
  • Other symptoms, such as refusing to be fed, similar to when the child has a stomach ache, might indicate damage in the abdomen (e.g. to the liver or spleen). Sometimes abdominal trauma can also cause faded reddish urine, which indicates possible damage to the bladder.
  • If your child cannot move his arms or legs, this could be a sign of a bone, joint or muscle injury.

Faqs About Baby’s Bed

“If there are no immediate signs of an injury, your baby could suffer from a concussion, a brain injury that causes temporary loss of normal brain functioning,” says Dr Balakrishnan. Prevent falls by making sure your baby does not sleep on an adult bed without supervision.

Watch the child carefully for 24 hours after a head injury to see whether they develop any signs of a serious head injury.

You'll need to hold it next to the bruise for about 20 minutes. It's common for babies to hit their heads while exploring, and they're usually back to their normal selves soon. However, keep an eye on your baby over the next 24 hours, and if you're still worried, phone your doctor for advice.

You should call your doctor after any fall from a bed if your baby is under one year old. If you don't immediately see any signs of injury, put your child at ease. Once your baby has calmed, you'll also want to inspect their body for any injuries or bruising.

Excessive bruising and swelling. Vomiting more than once. Unusual sleepiness and difficulty staying alert. Loss of consciousness or not responding to voice/touch.


how do you sew a baby cot sheet (3)Here’s what parents should do if their baby falls off the bed

Believe it or not, it can happen to anybody. This common occurrence is the leading cause of injuries for children. You happen to have your baby laying on your bed—away from the edge, no less. You turn around for just a few seconds, and then… your baby fell off the bed. 

What do you do? First off, you’ll need to refrain from panicking, as difficult as that may be. Taking a deep breath and making some initial observations is a vital preliminary step to ensure your baby gets just the right help. Additionally, we have some advice for you to follow if this unfortunate predicament happens to your child.

Remain calm and gauge the situation


The first step poses a challenge to any parent’s instinct to pick up their child. However, one of the most important pieces of advice for what to do if a baby falls off the bed is not to pick them up. 

Moving your child could make things worse if they sustained a head or neck injury due to the fall. Therefore, unless your child is at risk for further injury, you should keep from moving them.

At the same time, if your baby falls off the bed and immediately goes into a seizure or starts vomiting, gently roll the child onto their side to avoid choking. Make sure the neck stays completely straight.

Likewise, if your baby is unconscious, you would call 911 right away. If your baby struggles to stay awake or appears limp after the fall, you’ll also want to call 911. If the fall resulted in an open wound, you should apply gentle pressure and check for any bruising.

After any fall, your child will likely act sleepy. You may want to ask their doctor if you should wake your baby up at regular intervals to check for concussion symptoms.

Your baby may be more irritable, have a shorter attention span, or vomit. Head and neck pain can also occur.

However, if your little one is breathing and acting normally, letting your child rest can benefit, if they’re difficult to wake or can’t be fully woken at a normal interval, call their healthcare provider.

You can ask your child’s doctor if you should give your child pain medication and in what dose.

Your child’s doctor will also likely advise against rough or vigorous play to reduce the risk for further injuries for at least 24 hours. This includes avoiding riding toys or climbing.

Adult-supervised play can include:

  • blocks
  • puzzles
  • going on stroller rides
  • listening to a story

If your child goes to daycare, inform the personnel of the fall and the need for closer supervision.

Call the doctor

As for the bleeding, bruising, or bump on the head previously mentioned, you can call the doctor to gain more information about any other first aid that needs to be applied.

Anytime a fall occurs, especially for a young infant, you should call your doctor anyway. 

They may ask you to bring your baby into the office that very same day regardless of the appearance and seriousness of the injuries. In this situation, it’s better to play it safe.

Along with the check-up, the doctor will advise you on how to control your baby’s pain level and recommend an over-the-counter medication like the infant formula of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Aside from the loss of consciousness and vomiting, according to Healthline, you should call 911 if you see any of the following symptoms:

  • Bleeding out of nose and ears
  • Swelling of the soft spot
  • Any other bruising or swelling on the head or around the eyes or ears
  • Sensitive to noise (even white noise) and light
  • Dilated pupils or one pupil being bigger than the other
  • Inability to stay awake regardless of the time of day

Any of these signs indicate a fracture or a serious internal injury.

Keep a close watch

As far as what to do if a baby falls off the bed but sustains no serious injuries, you’ll need to keep a close watch on behaviour and other factors. After such an incident, babies tend to get rather sleepy and want to rest more than usual. 

Therefore, your doctor might advise you to wake your baby up periodically to check for signs of a concussion and to make sure their condition is not getting worse.

When waking your baby, you’ll need to check for the following:

  • If they awaken easily
  • If they recognize you
  • If breathing is normal

If you see all these signs, all should be well within a few days. However, if you notice something out of the ordinary or one or more of these signs are not occurring, call 911 or your family doctor immediately.

You take all of the safety measures to ensure your baby’s wellbeing, but there are times when accidents do happen. Staying calm and collected is the most important thing to do if your baby falls off the bed. 

Another crucial fact to remember is that if you decide to call emergency medical services, your doctor, or you decide to go to the ER immediately, no one will fault you for taking an abundance of caution. It’s always better to make sure your baby is ok.

Observing Symptoms and Initial Treatment

If your child has symptoms of swelling, bruising, or a bump on the head, with crying then sudden pauses, apply a cold compress to the area of the swelling. Observe the symptoms for 24-48 hours, and if there are no other symptoms after 24 hours, apply a warm compress to the same area. 

If there are other symptoms after 24 hours, however, such as excessive and unusual crying, vomiting, drowsiness, or if your child spits up, take your child to see a doctor immediately.

If you wish to give your child painkillers, use paracetamol, as this is safer for them than other types of painkillers. However, if after taking painkillers your child is still crying and still in pain, and their condition is not improving, take them to see a doctor immediately.

Symptoms of an injury might not be obvious right away, so even if you don’t think emergency medical care is needed, keep a close eye on your baby’s behaviour over the next 24 hours.

“Usually, once you’ve passed that 24-hour mark, it’s safe to say that anything scary is less likely,” Dr Ye Mon says.

Babies are likely to want to go to sleep after a fall, whether they have a concussion or not. Dr Ye Mon says it isn’t necessary to try to keep them awake to monitor them, but you should try waking them every few hours to make sure they’re rousable. If they’re not, seek immediate medical care.

If you notice any behaviour that is out of the ordinary – if your baby is more fussy than usual or inconsolable – that’s something that should be checked out by a doctor, too.

And, if you have other reasons to suspect that your baby is injured, trust your parental instincts.

Is it an emergency?

how do i stop my baby from crying in the crib

It can be hard to tell whether infants have sustained an injury or are in pain, but there are some key signs to look for.

Before picking up a child after a fall, check for obvious signs of head trauma, which would warrant an immediate call to 9-1-1 for emergency help. Those signs include:

  • Loss of consciousness.
  • Vomiting.
  • Discharge of blood coming out of the nose or ears.
  • Swelling of the soft spot.
  • Bruising or swelling along with the head, or obvious skull fracture.

If any of these signs are present, avoid the urge to pick up your child and comfort them. “With head traumas, it’s possible that they’ve also injured their neck or spine, and you don’t want to worsen the injury by moving them possibly,” Dr Ye Mon says.

A deformity anywhere on the body that looks like a broken bone should also be treated as an emergency.

If the baby is having a seizure after a fall, gently roll them to their side before calling 9-1-1, she adds.

If the child is alert and crying (that’s a normal reaction for a startled baby, even when there is no injury), and there are no obvious signs of injury, gently pick them up and console them.

Signs you should go to the ER.

Even if your baby didn’t lose consciousness or appear to have a severe injury, there are still signs that can require a trip to the emergency room. These include:

  • being inconsolable
  • bulging of the soft spot in the front of the head
  • continually rubbing their head
  • excessively sleepy
  • has bloody or yellow fluid coming from the nose or ears
  • high-pitched cry
  • changes in balance or coordination
  • pupils that aren’t the same size
  • sensitivity to light or noise
  • vomiting

If you notice these changes, seek emergency attention as quickly as possible.

If you notice any symptoms that your baby is acting out of the ordinary — or you feel something isn’t right — seek immediate medical attention. It’s better to be safe than sorry in this instance.

That said, while it is important to observe your baby and consult their doctor as needed, keep in mind most babies don’t sustain a significant injury or head trauma from falling off the bed.

Risk Factors of Bed Falls

  • Leaving a child alone who is over the age of 4 months. Normally when children reach this age, they start learning how to turn themselves over. However, even if your child is younger than four months old and is not yet mobile, you should not get complacent. Keep your baby in sight at all times.
  • Unsuitable beds, such as beds without guards or beds with rails that are too wide.
  • Beds that are higher than 120 cm. If a child falls from a high bed, it increases the risk of bleeding in the brain.
  • Beds that have gaps, rails or holes wider than 6 cm. Your baby may be able to put their arms or legs through the gaps, but their head may get stuck. Moreover, if your child’s legs cannot reach the floor, accidents such as self-strangulation can happen, which can be fatal.

Prevent Your Baby from Falling Out of Bed

  • Your child’s bed or cot should have guards on all four sides, and each guard should be tightly locked. This is to prevent the child from bumping into the guard and working it loose, allowing the child to fall out of bed.
  • The gaps between your child’s bed railings should be no wider than 6 cm. You can place a sheet or pillow against the outside of the railings to prevent the child from putting their arms or legs through the cot or bed.
  • Use a low-lying place for sleeping, such as a mattress on the floor.
  • Do not let your child sleep alone. Parents or guardians should have their child in sight at all times.

Many parents may think that their child is unlikely to fall out of bed, but this type of accident is more common than you might think. As a parent, you only need to be complacent for a split second. If your child falls out of bed, the complications can be serious. 

So to prevent your child from being caught up in an accident never let them out of sight or leave them alone, and always use a suitable bed. Accidents cannot be foreseen, but they can be prevented.


Scroll to Top