family, Health

Very Dangerous To Pick A Kid Up By Their Hands

For different reasons, many people pick kids up by their hands. Despite being liked and appreciated by most of the children, the practice should be avoided for it may lead to serious dangers. In his book “The Portable Pediatrician”, William Sears says that children may suffer from a dislocation of elbow, head, hand and finger injuries because of this common practice.

Slipped Elbow

slipped elbow or nursemaid’s elbow happens when the forearm bone slips out from its normal place where it is attached to the elbow joint. According to Sears, the slipped elbow is not an uncommon issue among children. He adds that it is the largest risk that could happen to kids when picked up by their hands. Children no older than five years old are the most vulnerable category, yet – to kidshealth website – children who are older than five are also likely to develop the condition. Lifting kids, or else swinging them, by their hands place pressure on the arms which may cause a slip in the elbow ligament, leading to a dislocation. It is a painful condition that in order to treat it, a visit to the doctor must be paid.

Injuries of the Head

According to “Biology: Life on Earth with Physiology” book, when children are lifted by their hands, they have to make their heads adjusted to match the pulling-up pressure. Babies who normally don’t have complete head control might swing their heads either too far backward or too far forward, which is dangerous. Besides, they may harm neck muscles as well. Being pulled up, older kids as well may injure their heads if being moved in a wrong manner.

Injuries of the Shoulders

The book “Health, Safety and Nutrition for the Young Child” states that when children are pulled up vertically instead of being lifted forward with the hands, pressure is placed on the kid’s shoulders. That pressure may cause some damage in the shoulder’ muscles, or else (although rarely) a dislocation of the shoulder.

Injuries of the Hands

Because it is fast and more convenient, people generally lift young kids by their still-fragile hands. In doing so, it’s likely to pull on their fingers. The action may cause bruised nails, dislocated/broken fingers or other bad injuries. Sears shows that if too much pressure is placed on the hands, injuries in the kids’ wrists are very likely.


  • “The Portable Pediatrician”; William Sears, M.D., et al.; 2011
  • “Biology: Life on Earth with Physiology”; Gerald Audesirk, et al.; 2008
  • “Health, Safety and Nutrition for the Young Child”; Lynn R. Marotz; 2011