I just recently learned that swinging a toddler by their arms can really be dangerous.  Walking down the street with Mommy and Daddy and being lifted up and swung is one of my grandson’s favorite activities. For kids between one and four, this can result in injury to elbows or shoulders. Toddlers’ elbows and shoulders cannot withstand the stress exerted on them from jerking and swinging. Possible injuries include nursemaid’s elbow, when an elbow injury occurs, and a dislocated shoulder, when a shoulder injury occurs, states the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. If a child’s elbow dislocates, a forearm bone moves out of place where it attaches to the elbow. A dislocated shoulder is a similar situation, except that it occurs at the shoulder instead of the elbow.

Both injuries are very painful and the child needs to be taken to a doctor or emergency room for the dislocation to be corrected. A a school nurse recently told me that these dislocations can occur over and over again once they happen the first time.” Once an elbow or shoulder dislocates, it may be more likely to happen again due to the soft tissues around the joint stretching and not providing tight support for the joint”, states the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center.

Instead of swinging, hold your child under the armpits or around the rib cage during spinning games.