My 6-month old hit his head on the (round) protruding edge of the playpen when he was trying to sit up / crawl on the floor (the playpen has this nasty edge about five inches off the ground). I don't think he hit it from a great distance, but it made a slight bumping noise and he cried instantly. He was whining a bit after his crying bout and spat up a bit of milk (as he often does, no real puking) and now, an hour later, appears fine. I cannot even detect a bump or red spot on his head. I am easily worried, too easily (the sleep deprivation doesn't help), and know he is probably fine, but can someone reassure me he should be OK? I am concerned about possible brain injury. (When should you be worried about that?) Thank you!
He'll be just fine. :) They hit their heads ALL the time. You never get used to it, even though people will tell you to.
I spoke to our pediatrician about it (who is three hours away and too far to go for every little thing) and he gave me some great tips on what I can do to check my kids at home if they have a bad fall.
1. Check the eyes every few minutes afterwards. Both pupils should be the same size.
2. If you want to, you can briefly shine a light in baby's eyes - not right in, just on baby's face. You can use a low-power penlight or sit baby in front of a lamp in a dim room and turn it on. Watch the pupils. Both pupils should contract normally.
3. Watch behavior. Sluggishness and instantly wanting to lay down and go to sleep for no reason (not naptime, didn't breastfeed, shouldn't be tired) are things to watch out for. It's okay for them to be sleepy after a fall if they have cried hard or if you breastfeed them to soothe them after a fall. Unexplained listlessness might be a bad sign, though.
But kids usually have to hit their heads HARD for you to see any of these kinds of symptoms.