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Survey About Injury Risks to Children

A national survey of 1,000 parents found that many don't know key facts regarding potential safety hazards for children. Among the survey's findings: One in three parents are unaware that children can drown in as little as 2 inches of water. Less than half of parents know falls are the leading cause of unintentional injuries to toddlers. And more than half underestimate how long children should be in a booster seat. "Particularly in the area of car safety seat usage, parental knowledge tends to decrease as children age," said Dr. Michael Gittelman, an emergency room pediatrician and medical adviser to "Get on Board with Child Safety," a national child injury prevention initiative.

"Parents need targeted information about the different unintentional injury risks to children as they grow, from infant stage to toddlers to kids and all the way through adolescence." Unintentional injuries are the leading cause of death for U. children ages 14 and under. "Get on Board with Child Safety" was spearheaded by the children's brand "Safety 1st" and the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions.

They offer the following tips for parents: * Use a booster seat for children up to 8 years or 80 pounds. Adult seat belts usually do not fit such children properly unless they are in booster seats. When the belt sits too high in the abdominal and neck areas, it can cause serious injuries in an auto crash. Your child is approximately half as likely to be injured when using a booster seat instead of a seat belt alone. * Always have your children wear a helmet. Bike injuries send hundreds of thousands of kids ages 5 to 14 to the emergency room each year. * Supervise the trampoline. Approximately 90,000 kids visit the emergency room each year after a trampoline injury. Trampolines are even more dangerous when multiple kids are jumping at once or when a child does somersaults. * Never leave children unattended in or near the water.

Install gates around pools and use doorknob covers to prevent toddlers from getting out of the house and into water without supervision. Always drain small pools when not in supervised use.


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