If your baby dislocates their arm

Babies’ joints can be delicate and they can become dislocated. This can happen if a strong force pulls a limb into an abnormal position, such as pulling them up by their hands or pulling their arm through a sleeve when getting them dressed.

Signs that may make you suspect a dislocated joint are pain, inability to move the joint, swelling, bruising or deformity of the area. Dislocations can be very serious.

Watch our video - what to do if your baby has a dislocated joint

What to do

Keep your baby still Immobilise the injury with a sling

1. Try to keep your baby still. Don’t try to replace the dislocated bone into its socket as this can cause further injury.

2. Immobilise the injury with a sling or use padding and a broad fold bandage (a triangular bandage folded to make a long piece of cloth).

3. Call 999/112 for emergency help or take the baby to see a healthcare professional or hospital. Treat them for shock if necessary.

4. While you’re waiting for help to arrive check their breathing, pulse and whether they can respond to you.

5. If you’ve put on a bandage, check their circulation every 10 minutes.

Related pages

How to make a sling

How to make a sling


Treatment for fallen baby

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