Sure, playgrounds are the most obvious place for a childhood injury or fall, but what about other places? Children are creative, curious, and uncoordinated, as well as energetic and a fall can happen in an instant, with or without supervision. Falling and injuries are a natural occurrence of childhood resulting in cuts, bruises, sprains, fractures, broken bones, and even concussions.
The CDC (Center for Disease Control) reported over 8,000 children nationwide are seen each day for fall injuries. Children under 5 years of age represent the highest proportion of childhood fall emergency room visits.
Prevention is the best remedy and the #1 rule is supervision. Reported common injuries are from:
- Falls from windows – Window screens do not adequately prevent a child from falling out of a window. Best practice is to never place a child on or near a window sill. Window guards on those above one story add an extra safety measure for your child. When closed, keep windows locked.
- Bouncy seats/portable car seats – These should never be placed on a table. A child vigorously kicking and bouncing may slowly move the carrier to teeter over the edge.
- Stairs – A gate is an excellent deterrent to prevent serious falls down a staircase.
- Shopping carts – Never allow a child to stand in a shopping cart. A loss of balance or any slight movement from the child or even being bumped into by another cart can send a child tumbling to the ground.
- Cribs – Always ensure the rails are raised and locked. Children are masters of escape in an unsecured crib. It’s also wise to frequently check all parts of the crib for any loose parts.
- Changing tables – It seems to take a contortionist to navigate changing a baby and reaching for changing supplies while keeping one hand on the baby, but maintaining constant contact will avoid the possibility of the child falling from the table.
- Beds – Jumping on a bed is great fun however, it can be dangerous. Bunk beds without safety railings are an accident waiting to happen.
- Sports – Always, always, always have your child outfitted in the sport-appropriate protective gear.
- Playgrounds – Look for those with wooden chips or sand and avoid playgrounds with cement or grass.
It’s hard to keep our children safe from everything, but close supervision is the best preventive measure.
If your child does suffer an injury, it’s good to know Sarasota Orthopedic Associates treats children as well as adults. Our pediatric orthopedic specialists and sports medicine physicians are here to help get your little ones back in action. We have offices in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch, and Venice and, when needed, offer same day appointments. Visit our website at www.soa.md for more information about us.