Safe and Sound: Travelling with Children

Overview

Travel can be a terrific experience for any child, unless they become hurt or ill. Within these pages, Dr. Marlene M. Coleman - a board-certified pediatrician with more than thirty years of experience - clearly outlines preventative, proactive advice to help you plan and enjoy any outing with children, be it a day trip, a week's drive, or a flight abroad.
With this book in hand, you can prepare for both known and unforeseen circumstances - making it much more likely that your ...
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Overview

Travel can be a terrific experience for any child, unless they become hurt or ill. Within these pages, Dr. Marlene M. Coleman - a board-certified pediatrician with more than thirty years of experience - clearly outlines preventative, proactive advice to help you plan and enjoy any outing with children, be it a day trip, a week's drive, or a flight abroad.
With this book in hand, you can prepare for both known and unforeseen circumstances - making it much more likely that your children will enjoy and return from their travels happy, healthy, and safe.
You get expert, up-to-the-minute information on: travel planning and preparation for a variety of situations; security measures to safeguard your child; guidelines for staying healthy while traveling; specific advice for a variety of travel-related illnesses and injuries; general suggestions for successful trips with children; tips on traveling while pregnant or with special-needs children, planning grandparent-grandchild trips, and more!
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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
"Safe and Sound will assuage every parent's anxieties about heading out with kids in tow, allowing everyone to enjoy both the destination AND the journey. This invaluable guide is truly chicken soup for the road!"--Steve Zikman, author of The Power of Travel: A Passport to Adventure,Discovery & Growth and co-author of Chicken Soup for the Traveler's Soul
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762726912
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/1/2003
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Marlene M. Coleman, M.D., is a board-certified pediatrician with an adolescent medicine emphasis and a sub-specialty in travel medicine; an attending physician at California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California; and an Associate Clinical Professor of Family Medicine at the University of Southern California Medical School. As a Captain in the U.S. Naval Reserve Medical Corps, she served in Washington, D.C., at the Naval Annex to the Pentagon during Operation Desert Storm. In addition, Dr. Coleman is a frequent and popular speaker on a variety of health-related topics, in particular healthy travel with children. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Judge William Huss.
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Read an Excerpt

Avoiding Abduction
We gaze in horror at the photo of a lost child. Our hearts ache for the desperate parents. We wonder how a child can just disappear.... what the parents could have done to prevent it.... what we could do to protect our children. For many parents, the thought of having a child taken from them is too terrifying to contemplate. The most dangerous thing, though, is to put the possibility out of your mind. Mentally prepare yourself to minimize the chance -- even though it is actually an extremely small one -- that one of your children could be abducted.
* Do not get so involved in sightseeing that you forget about personal safety. Be aware of the possibility that a criminal can victimize you or someone in your party.
* In many places, Americans are perceived as fabulously wealthy, and are easy targets for crime.
* Avoid taking your children to places where anti-American sentiment could make you more vulnerable to crime or attack.
* Always keep your children close to you.
* Keep your family together as much as possible. Tell your children what to do if you get separated, and keep reviewing this instruction with them as the situation changes. Above all, make sure they-and you-will remain calm if separated. Being lost is not the same as being abducted.
* Trust your intuition. If someone who gives you a bad feeling approaches your party, everybody should be trained to move on when the designated leader gives the signal. Make sure that everyone in your travel party understands this tactic, or someone is likely to be left behind.

Abductions do happen. They happen in small towns and big cities, during the day and at night. Yetparents of abducted children always say, "we never would have imagined that it could happen to our family."
1.
Educate children early-even before pre-school-regarding appropriate behavior toward strangers. Safety skills include not taking anything (such as candy) from a stranger or petting a stranger's puppy. Establish a family code word and teach your children never to go anywhere with someone who doesn't know it.
2. Be aware. Parents, relatives, nannies and babysitters need to be vigilant to be safe. Look around. Be especially alert if you have more than one child, especially twins or triplets.
3. Do not make slightly older siblings responsible for the safety of younger ones; they are only companions to reinforce your instructions.
4. If you hire a babysitter or nanny, check references carefully and be sure your instructions are clear and well understood before you leave home.
5. Public places, including parks, movie theaters, arcades, stairwells, basements, malls and parking structures are common places for abductions. Never leave your child unattended.
6. Teach children how to dial 911 and what to say. Make sure they know important names and addresses.
7. Help your children to feel empowered, not terrified. Show them where they can go if they need help (a neighbor's house, police station, church, etc.). Help them to recognize authorities who can assist them, such as police. Teach them they have the right to say no, to question a stranger's authority, and to scream and scratch to protect themselves from harm.
8. Communicate openly with your children and encourage them to talk with you about their activities, friends, concerns and plans.
9. Do not a child's name on their clothing, bicycles or backpacks. Abductors may gain a child's trust by calling the child by name.
10. Teach your children door and phone rules for home and hotel: they should never open the door to a stranger-no matter what they say-and should never tell an unknown caller that you are not at home.
11. Instruct your children to avoid playing or taking shortcuts through abandoned buildings or fields and make sure they understand the dangers of hitchhiking.
12. Abductors may try to win a child's trust by asking the child to keep a secret or to help find a lost pet. Be sure your child recognizes this danger.
13. Make a meeting plan for public places so your children know what to do if you should get separated at the mall (go to the nearest cashier) or elsewhere (stay in one place and let me find you).
14. Some children first "meet" their abductors online. Examine carefully your child's online activities and friendships. You may need to help your child understand that this is an important part of the care you give them and, until they are 18, is both legally and emotionally more important than their privacy.
15. If you notice a change in your child's behavior, talk about it with them. If your child brings home unexplained money or gifts, question them carefully.
16. When you are traveling in unfamiliar places or busy with your shopping or cell phone, you may be momentarily distracted and lose track of your child.
17. Take notice of people who show an unusual amount of interest in your child.
18. Find out from local law enforcement whether a registered sex offender lives in your community.
19. Keep information about your chil photos at least once a year, more often for pre-school age children. Maintain fingerprints, footprints, dental and medical information, birth certificates and descriptions or photos of birthmarks.

You and your children should be aware and prepared, but you need not live in fear. The more positive communication and coping skills you teach your child, the safer and more comfortable you both will be.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Introduction 1
Part I Travel Planning, Safety, and Well-being
Chapter 1 Planning a Vacation 7
Preplanning 8
Choosing a Destination 9
Are Your Children Travel-Worthy? 10
Should You Take a Nanny? 11
Involve Your Children in Trip Planning 12
Where Will You Stay? 13
Your Family Vacation Ally: The Travel Agent 14
Passports, Visas, Customs, Credit, and Other Concerns 15
Clothing Comfort and Style 16
Photography, Souvenirs, and Shopping 17
Chapter 2 Parents' Guide to Safety at Home and Abroad 21
Take Care of Yourself First 21
When It Is Just You and Your Child 21
Insurance 22
Finding Medical Help Away from Home 22
MedicAlert 23
Proving Your Child Is Yours 23
Los Child! 24
Avoiding Abduction 25
Guarding Against Crime 27
Stow Your Valuables 29
Child-Friendly Hotel Rooms 31
Family Fire Safety 32
Hazards at Holiday Time 33
The Poisons Around Us 35
Childproofing Checklist 37
Safe and Healthy Play Places 40
Safety Tips for Various Age Groups 43
Children and Disaster: Coping with Crisis 48
Chapter 3 Health Guidelines to Follow 51
Safe Food and Water 52
If You or Your Children Get Sick Away from Home 53
Infectious Disease and Immunization 54
Vaccine Considerations 56
Some Diseases to Be Aware Of 58
Amebiasis 58
Cholera 58
Giardiasis 59
Hepatitis 59
Lyme Disease 62
Malaria 62
Salmonella 64
Schistosomiasis 64
Shigellosis 65
Typhoid Fever 65
Yellow Fever 65
Common Travel Problems 66
Allergies 66
Anaphylaxis 66
Animal Concerns, Including Rabies 67
Back Problems 68
Bites--Animal and Human 69
Burns 70
Choking 70
Cuts and Abrasions 71
Dental Issues 72
Ear Problems 72
Eye Concerns 74
Fear of Flying 75
Foot Matters 77
Headache 78
Head Injury 78
High-Altitude Concerns 78
Homesickness 80
Hypothermia 81
Injuries and Accidents 81
Insect Bites and Stings 82
Intestinal Difficulties 83
Jet Lag 86
Motion Sickness 87
Nosebleeds 88
Overheating 89
Skin Rashes 89
Sleeplessness 90
Sunburn 91
Upper and Lower Respiratory Infections 92
General Health Concerns 93
Chapter 4 What to Pack 95
Let Your Children Do Their Own Packing 95
Packing Checklists 97
Assembling an Effective Travel Medicine Kit 101
Items Necessary When Traveling with an Infant 104
Luggage Suggestions 105
Part II Travel Challenges and Solutions
Chapter 5 Other Travel Situations 109
Pregnant Parents on the Road 109
Traveling with an Infant 111
Twins and Multiples 112
Traveling with Another Family 114
Taking Your Child's Friend Along 114
Pets and Children on the Road 115
When Your Child Has to Fly Solo 116
Your Secret Vacation Spot: Home 118
Chapter 6 Grand Trips with Grandparents 121
Planning the Multigenerational Trip 121
Assuming the Parental Role: Advice for Grandparents 125
Health Insurance Abroad for Grandparents 126
Great Activities for Grandparents and Children 126
Chapter 7 Today's Special-Needs Travelers 129
Think What You Can Do, Not What You Can't Do 129
Traveling with Special Needs 130
Service Animals 134
Part III Travel Modes
Chapter 8 Commercial Transportation 139
Train Travel 139
Cruising with Kids 141
Air Travel 143
Sightseeing by Bus 146
Chapter 9 Travel by Car, SUV, or RV 147
How Will You Get There? ... and How Will You Get Around? 147
The Advantages of Driving 149
Child Restraints 151
Marvelous Miles and Joyful Jaunts 152
Packing for a Land Trip 152
Driver Beware 153
Chapter 10 The Family Outdoors 155
The Family That Adventures Together 155
Pre-trip Boot Camp 156
What to Take for Safety and Comfort 156
Getting Ready to Hit the Trail 158
Pets and Camping 161
Picnics on the Go or in Camp 162
Wild Animal Awareness 163
Dangerous Vacation Sports 165
Water Safety 166
Appendix A Dr. Coleman's Prescription for Safe Baby-sitting 171
Appendix B Plan a Successful Return Before You Leave 181
Appendix C Recommended Resources 187
Index 203
About the Author 213
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