Every parents worst nightmare is that they could lose their child at some point. Losing your child can be stressful, but you will feel much more comfortable if you know what to do. Most parents will panic if they lose their child in a public place. That is perfectly understandable, but you will want to remain as calm as possible. You will also feel much more comfortable if you took the necessary precautions beforehand.
Understand the Risks of Your Child Getting Lost
Nearly 300,000 children are lost every hour of the day, but almost all of them return to their families. However, you will need to be realistic about the fact that your own child will probably be separated from you at some point. You will need to be prepared in case this ever happens. Fortunately, there are a number of things that you can do to get your child back safely such as labeling their clothes and making sure they know what to do if they are lost.
Teach Your Children what to Do if they Are Lost
You will want to make sure that your children know what to do if they’re separated from you. You have probably already told your children to be careful talking to strangers before. You want to make sure they understand to be even more careful if they are lost. Predators are more likely to target children that are vulnerable.
Teach your child to go to a police officer or other authority figure first. They can also go to someone who is clearly a parent if they need help. Other parents are more likely to be trustworthy than another stranger.
How to Prepare Yourself
You will need to be prepared as well in case your child is lost. Carry a recent photograph of your child to share with authorities if they are lost. You should also remember what your child is wearing any time you go out so that you can tell people what to look for.
Make sure that you don’t panic if your child is lost. You need to have a clear head to help look for them. You will also want to avoid tipping off potential abductors that your child is missing.
Label Young Children’s Clothing and Other Accessories
People will be able to get your child back to you much more quickly if they can identify them. This can be a lot trickier if your child is too young to speak for themselves. Your best bet is to label their clothing so that people know their names if they are ever lost. You should also have your address and relevant contact information on their clothing so people can contact you.
You may also want to consider adding name labels on your older children’s sweatshirts, backpacks and other clothing. They may lose them along the way and you will at least be able to know where they were. Being able to identify a discarded backpack right away might also help you understand if your child may be in more serious trouble.
Getting separated from your child can be particularly unnerving. However, you should remember that almost all children are recovered shortly after. You will be better prepared for them if you know what to do beforehand.