How to Prevent the Most Common Child Injuries During the Summer
Summer is associated with vacations, sun, beach, and fun; however, it is during these months when the kids suffer more injuries in and out of their homes.
According to the data of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), activities in playgrounds are the main cause of child injuries out of home among children 1 to 9 years.
In fact, from 2014 to 2017, the injuries provoked for using a trampoline placed second, followed for those caused for riding a bicycle, which currently reach an annual average of 50,000 injured children.
Sadly, injuries related to swimming have increased by 23% among children from 0 to 9 years. In contrast, the younger ones (0-4) are the main victims of accidental death by drowning. This is the leading cause of death in this age group.
Child Injuries in Playgrounds
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that every year, emergency departments treat 200,000 children 14 years or younger for playground-related injuries. From those kids, at least 20,000 suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Even though all children are at risk of having an accident in a playground, boys are 55% more prone to be injured in a playground than girls.
Moreover, the majority of the traumatic brain injuries were suffered by kids from 5 to 9 years of age. The swings, the monkey bars, and the equipment to climb are involved in most of these injuries.
How to be Safe on a Playground
To avoid child injuries in a playground, the CDC recommends:
- Check if the playgrounds have a soft material under them, such as wood chips, sand, or a mat.
- Be sure that the playground equipment is right for your child’s age.
- Be sure that there are guardrails in the right condition to prevent falls.
Remove any object in the play area that could make your child trip and fall, such as tree stumps or rocks.
Child Injuries on Trampolines
Even when jumping on a trampoline could be an extreme, freeing, and fun experience, it also could cause severe injuries. Since 2014, using these elastic beds has provoked an increase in the children’s visits to the emergency rooms.
In 2017, the emergency departments attended more than 26,000 children among 0-4 years with jumping or trampoline-related injuries. This number has only increased in the last few years.
The damage is so concerning that the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly discourages the use of this item. A lot of cervical spine injuries take place while falling off a trampoline or after attempting a flip or backflip.
How to be Safe on a Trampoline
If you have a trampoline at home meant for your kids to use, the Mayo Clinic recommends:
- The trampoline must be at ground level. The higher the level of the trampoline, the higher the risk of an injury if the kids fall off.
- Install a safety net that surrounds the trampoline. This way, you will avoid any possible fall.
- Cover the area that surrounds the trampoline with mats. This way, if your children fall outside the trampoline, they will not injure themselves.
- Never allow any children under 6 years use the trampoline
- Never allow your children to use the trampoline without adult supervision
How to be Safe on a Trampoline
Riding a bicycle is one of the favorites activities of the Americans during the Summer, and kids are no exception. However, when you travel this way, you are at risk of having an accident.
Data from the CPSC state that, every year, the emergency departments treat more than 26,000 children with traumatic brain injuries caused by riding a bicycle. Nevertheless, the problem is more severe. According to the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), in 2017, at least 76,000 kids 9 years or younger suffered an injury riding a bicycle.
How to be Safe on a Bicycle
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends:
- Be sure that your kids use a helmet that fits the size and shape of their heads properly.
- The bicycle must fit the size of your child. The bigger the bike, the harder to control it.
- Children must use equipment to protect themselves (kneepads and elbow pads).
- Teach them to be always visible. Your children should wear bright clothing during the day and reflective gear at night.
- The bicycle must have a front light and a red back light, as well as night reflectors.
- Never ride more than one person per seat.
- Both hands must be on the handlebars unless they are signaling a turn with one hand.
- Ensure that their shoelaces are tied. This way, they do not get caught in the bike chain.
Child Injuries in Pools
Even though pools are the most visited areas during the Summer, pools are responsible for thousands of children’s deaths every year. Data of the CDC reveals that an annual average of 300 kids under 5 years of age die by accidental drowning in swimming pools. The problem is so severe that the CPSC considers it a “public health crisis.”
As if that was not enough, information of the NEISS states that from 2014 to 2019, the emergency departments attend an annual average of 5,900 children on this group of age with drowning-related injuries.
The most shocking thing is that 48% of these cases happened in home pools and only 20% of them in public pools.
How to be Safe on a Pool
To keep your kids safe while they swim, the CPSC recommends:
- Never leave the children alone near or inside water.
- Teach your kids how to swim.
- Teach them to keep themselves away from the drain, as drains could suck them into the water.
- Ensure that any pool your children get into has functional drain covers.
- Install barriers, gates, covers, and alarms surrounding your pool.
- Learn to perform CPR in kids and adults.
As you can see, your kids are at risk of being injured while they are having fun this summer. They count on you to prevent joy from turning into a tragedy.
If, despite all efforts, your kids get injured, do not forget that they count on you to defend their rights. At Farahi Law Firm, we have skilled child injury lawyers that will accompany you through the whole process. We will work hard to get the maximum compensation possible for your kids.