In honor of National Child Injury Prevention Week, End Injury welcomes guest blogger Prevent Child Injury.
Children can be unpredictable, but child injury is not. Research shows us how and when injuries happen and who they’re most likely to affect. We know that boys are at higher risk than girls. We know that younger children are at greater risk for some types of injury, such as choking and drowning, than older children. Other factors, such as the educational level and age of parents, also affect the risk of injury for children. Injuries do not happen randomly. By understanding the factors that affect injury rates, we can predict who is at risk and why.
Because we know when and why child injuries happen, we can figure out how to prevent them. Safety might seem like common sense, but often we need more than instinct to keep children safe. Our society has made changes to laws, changes in product design, and changes in how we interact with our surroundings to keep children safe and healthy. Car seats, bike helmets, and child-resistant medication bottles were all developed after research showed that kids were suffering injuries and even dying due to everyday activities. As individuals and as a society, we can take actions that will prevent many tragic deaths and reduce the chances of a life-changing injury to a child.
Even with all of this knowledge, unintentional injury still accounts for 40% of the child deaths in the United States—more than any other cause. There are some injuries that are so severe that doctors can’t fix them, so prevention is crucial for reducing the number of children killed or changed forever by injury. By making smart choices, every person has the chance to make an immediate, lasting impact. With your help, we can prevent child injury.
Predictable: Child injuries are not random. Research shows us how and when injuries happen and who is at risk.
Preventable: Because injuries are predictable, we can keep children safe by making changes to our behavior, surroundings, product design, and laws and policies.
Personal: We don’t have to wait for a new drug or medical device to prevent injuries. Each person has the power to reduce the risk of child injury today. Visit www.cdc.gov/safechild to learn how you can keep children healthy and safe.
About the author:
Prevent Child Injury is a national group of organizations and individuals, including researchers, health professionals, educators, and child advocates, working together to prevent injuries to children and adolescents in the U.S. In collaboration with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Prevent Child Injury promotes coordinated communication to the public about prevention of child injury, which is the leading cause of death of our nation’s youth. To become a member of Prevent Child Injury or for more information and resources on this and other injury topics, please visit www.preventchildinjury.org.
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