Sunday, November 6, 2011

200,000 kids injured in playground injuries

swing setAccording to the CDC, emergency departments treat more than 200,000 children ages 14 and younger for playground-related injuries costing on average $1.2 billion each year.

Where They Happen:
  • About 45% of playground-related injuries are severe–fractures, internal injuries, concussions, dislocations, and amputations (Tinsworth 2001).
  • About 75% of nonfatal injuries related to playground equipment occur on public playgrounds (Tinsworth 2001). Most occur at schools and daycare centers (Phelan 2001).
  • Between 1990 and 2000, 147 children ages 14 and younger died from playground-related injuries. Of them, 82 (56%) died from strangulation and 31 (20%) died from falls to the playground surface. Most of these deaths (70%) occurred on home playgrounds (Tinsworth 2001).

My own experience tells me it probably happens more than the numbers show. Many children get home based care with ice and over the counter medicines. In my own family, we have had cut feet (glass in the park), cut cheek (stitched in ER), scooter hit in back of head (stitched in head), golf club to the head (ice at home), fall off monkey bars (ice and motrin), and on and on. Sometimes the circumstances produce a decision to go immediately for care, and sometimes it's a wait and see.

Here are following are tips that can be used to prevent children from sustaining injuries on playgrounds:

Play safely. Check to make sure playground equipment your child uses is properly designed and maintained and there’s a safe, soft landing surface below.

Supervision is key. Supervise young children at all times around fall hazards, such as stairs and playground equipment, whether you’re at home or out to play.

Do you have any experience with playground injuries? Do you think the 200,000 annually represents injuries on U.S. playgrounds?

1 comment:

  1. That is the reason I always prefer indoor playground facilities for my son, and fortunately he likes soft play equipment more (as they less chances for a child to get injured).