There are lots of scary things that parents learn when raising children as one Kansas couple recently discovered when they got a scare with their infant daughter, Molly. Scott and Jess Walker noticed Molly was crying and becoming overheated, so they removed her socks. That’s when they noticed a single strand of hair had become wrapped tightly around one of her toes that it was cutting off circulation!
Luckily, mom sprung into action and removed the hair, which had already cut into her skin! What happened is called a hair tourniquet and not as rare as one might think. It occurs when hairs are lost loosely inside a sock and, because babies wriggle their feet a lot, the hair can become spontaneously tied around a toe until they start to restrict blood flow.
Here’s a photo of a hair (or toe) tourniquet.
Scott wanted to share his story because he thought it was an important thing for parents to be aware about. Here’s what he wrote:
“Had a small scare this afternoon with Ms. Molly. What happened was new to me, but apparently not totally uncommon, so I figured I’d share with my fellow parents out there.”
“I was with the family over lunch and Molly was cranky and screaming–nothing out of the ordinary. As worked up as she was getting, she started to overheat, which prompted Jess to remove her socks and cool her down. That’s when we saw her toe. This is called a hair tourniquet, which is literally a strand of hair that, while inside a sock, unexplainably wraps around a toe so tight that it can cut through the skin and potentially cut off blood circulation.
The parents sprung into action upon seeing her toe.
“Luckily for Molly, she has a mother with medical emergency superpowers who was able to remove the hair with tweezers and a magnifying glass within a few minutes.”
Scott posted a picture to Facebook that was taken about 45 minutes after the hair was removed.
“Unfortunately, the hair managed to cut all the way through Molly’s skin, completely around her toe, but it could have been worse had it gone much longer untreated, or if the hair wasn’t accessible.
“The doctor told me, for future reference, to always check the toes if the baby is inconsolable. Just an FYI to any parents or care takers out there.”
I never knew something like this could happen because of a single hair! Please share this important tip with the parents and caretakers you know.