We are heart sore every time we hear of a child who ingested penny batteries, and suffered harm. We understand the temptation of the shiny discs. However, kids will be kids and we should not suppress their inquisitive imaginations. We think we should rather protect them by doing a penny battery audit every night at bedtime.
We Are Open to Alternatives but Hear This
A seven-year-old girl named Kelsie Heath was playing with toys in her UK foster parents’ home. The circumstances were not ideal when she stuck a button battery up her nose and it became stuck.
She never told her carers, even when it leaked and burned through the septum separating her nostrils. To our way of thinking, the only way they could have avoided this was to do a penny battery audit that bedtime. For if they did so, they would have found a battery missing.
We are sad to report that Kelsie is not well at all. The doctors have removed the battery, but she still has nosebleeds, ear infections, and headaches. Unfortunately, doctors only noticed the problem after several visits to the hospital. The damage is thankfully repairable through a series of five operations over fifteen years. Our thoughts turn to how to manage ingesting lithium-ion batteries in future, especially as they could be anywhere kids play.
How to Introduce a Penny Battery Audit Program
We suggest parents treat penny batteries as hazardous materials so far as small children are concerned. This may sound weird, but we honestly cannot think of another suggestion.
They should consider opening a register listing all penny batteries in the home, and their location especially in toys.
Thereafter, it should be a simple matter to check that all penny batteries are present and correct, each night before the kids turn in. We think they should involve the children. and make it fun.