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Call the fambulance! New research shows average parent deals with an ‘everyday emergency’ every 4 hours

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The average parent deals with an ‘everyday emergency’ once every four hours, according to new research.

The research by Vodafone has revealed resolving sibling squabbles (18%), dealing with tantrums (17%), running late to an appointment (17%), disagreements about bedtime (17%) and struggling to understand a child’s homework (17%) are just some of the instances that pile on the pressure each day.

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88% of parents rely on tech tools to solve these continuous conundrums, with parents researching solutions on a smartphone (38%), phoning friends or family (32%) or using voice-controlled personal assistants such as Amazon Alexa (28%) to get them through.

More than a quarter (28%) also turn to WhatsApp groups with other parents to seek advice.

With so many tools on offer, parents say that they rely on tech to manage five out of the six ‘everyday emergencies’ they experience in a 24-hour period

While some challenges are more common, keeping children entertained (44%), helping out with homework (40%) and cooking meals for the family (31%), are the moments parents would find most difficult without tech.

And while an everyday emergency can happen when children are at any age, turning to tech is most common when kids are three years old. At this age especially, parents laud technology solutions such as apps that help them keep in touch with their child’s school or nursery (33%), online booking platforms to arrange medical appointments for children (26%) and online shopping apps (22%).

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Such is the importance of these solutions that 37% of those surveyed say that becoming a parent has shown them how much they need reliable connectivity whether they’re at home or out and about. Almost a third (31%) also say that reliable connectivity is much more important to them now than it was before they were a parent.

The need for reliable connectivity doesn’t stop at everyday emergencies – a massive 91% of parents now use tech to help them navigate the cost-of-living crisis, too, by searching for discounts online (48%), using online loyalty schemes (47%), or price comparison apps (38%).

A Vodafone spokesperson said: “We’re proud to be trusted by millions every day – from parents to emergency service workers – all of them in need of reliable connectivity to help them deal with whatever the day throws at them.

“With 77% of emergency services having connectivity contracts with Vodafone, people can trust our network for everything from a real-life emergency through to a family ‘emergency’ that most families know are only too common. Vodafone’s reliable network can help families and emergency staff alike feel cool, calm and connected.”

The 10 most common ‘everyday emergencies’ have been found to be:

  1. Child falling over and grazing themselves (21%)
  2. Resolving sibling squabbles (18%)
  3. Dealing with a child’s tantrums (17%)
  4. Running late to an appointment (17%)
  5. Disagreements about bedtime (17%)
  6. Struggling to understand a child’s homework (17%)
  7. Not knowing the answer to a question and googling to find out (16%)
  8. Realising you don’t have snacks left in the house (15%)
  9. Rescuing a lost favourite toy or comforter (15%)
  10. Losing internet connectivity when watching a child’s favourite show (15%)
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