Posts Tagged ‘
Tuesday, October 9th, 2012
Parents of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have to contend with a frightening and difficult aspect of the disorders–wandering or “elopement,” in which children stray from safe spaces to pursue objects of interest, often at risk to their physical safety. From The New York Times:
The behavior, called wandering or elopement, has led to numerous deaths in autistic children by drowning and in traffic accidents. Now a new study of more than 1,200 families with autistic children suggests wandering is alarmingly common. Nearly half of parents with an autistic child age 4 or older said their children had tried to leave a safe place at least once, the study reported. One in four said their children had disappeared long enough to cause concern. Many parents said their wandering children had narrowly escaped traffic accidents or had been in danger of drowning.
Those at greatest risk of wandering off were autistic children with severe intellectual deficits and those who do not respond to their names. The research was published on Monday in the journal Pediatrics.
“I knew this was a problem, but I didn’t know just how significant a problem it was until I really began to look into it,” said Dr. Paul A. Law, senior author of the study and director of the Interactive Autism Network, a registry that is a project of the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. “This is probably one of the leading causes of death and morbidity for kids with autism.”
Advocates for families affected by autism say the findings underscore the need to raise public awareness and alter policy. While Amber alerts are used to mobilize the public when a child is believed to have been abducted, for instance, generally they are not used when a disabled child goes missing, said Alison Singer, president and a founder of the Autism Science Foundation, one of the organizations that supported the study.
Image: Child crossing street, via Shutterstock
Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Laundry gel packs or pods are small, squishy, and brightly colored, making them look and feel a lot like candy. But a new report warns that children who bite into these concentrated detergent capsules can become seriously ill. WebMD has details:
A bite into the packs can cause drooling and vomiting and may burn the mouth, throat, eyes, and lungs.
“Certainly, the children we’ve seen have had pretty severe injuries from chemical contact with the soaps,” says Lyndsay Fraser, MD. Fraser is an ear, nose, and throat doctor at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Glasgow, Scotland.
In the new report, Fraser and her colleagues describe the cases of five children treated in the emergency room after biting into laundry detergent capsules.
All the children were younger than age 2. The oldest was released after treatment with steroids and antibiotics. The others needed breathing tubes to prop open their swollen and damaged airways. One needed surgery. All eventually recovered.
The report is published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
The National Association of Poison Control Centers (NAPCC) says this is an increasingly common problem in the United States; there are almost 3,000 reports so far this year of children ingesting laundry packs, WebMD reports. The NAPCC issued an alert about this problem in May, prompting Tide to change the design of its Pods container so that it’s harder for kids to open.
If you find your child with a gel pack in his mouth, poison experts recommend that you call poison control at 800-222-1222.
Image: Laundry gel capsules via Shutterstock.
Categories: Child Health, Must Read, Parents News Now | Tags: Child Health, detergent, gel packs, laundry detergent, laundry packs, pods, poison, poisoning, Safety, vomiting
Friday, July 20th, 2012
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a warning that parents should keep their babies’ monitors at least 3 feet away from their cribs, lest the children become entangled in the monitors’ cords. Seven children have reportedly strangled to death by monitor cords since 2002. From iVillage.com:
The organization is working with the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) on a national safety campaign about the issue, and JPMA today launched a website, babymonitorsafety.org, as well as a video and advertising campaign, to help spread the safety message. The group is also giving away free warning labels to attach to monitor cords. You can order one here.
Thursday, May 10th, 2012
Banzai Inflatable Pool Slides, made by Manley Toys, Ltd., have been recalled for major safety hazards, which have led to the deaths of at least one person, and the paralyzing injury of at least one other. From Parents.com’s Toy and Product Recall Finder:
THE DANGER: During use, the slide can deflate, allowing the user to hit the ground underneath the slide and become injured. The slide is also unstable and can topple over in both still and windy conditions and carries inadequate warnings and instructions. The CPSC is aware that a 29-year-old Colorado mother died in Andover, Mass. after fracturing her neck going down a Banzai in-ground pool water slide which had been placed over the concrete edge of a pool. The victim hit her head at the bottom of the slide because it had partially deflated. The CPSC and the retailers are aware of two other injuries which have occurred in a similar manner, including a 24-year-old man from Springfield, Mo. who became a quadriplegic and a woman from Allentown, Pa. who fractured her neck.
DESCRIPTION: The recall involves about 21,000 inflatable Banzai in-ground pool water slides designed for use with in-ground pools. The vinyl slides have a blue base, yellow sliding mat, and an arch going over the top of the slide. By connecting a hose to the top of the slide, water can be sprayed on its downward slope. The words ‘Banzai Splash’ are printed in a circular blue, orange, and white logo, shaped like a wave on either side of the slide. The recalled slides have the barcode number 2675315734 and model number 15734. Both the barcode and model number appear on the original packaging but are not on the actual slide.
SOLD AT: Walmart and Toys R Us nationwide from January 2005 through June 2009 for about $250.
WHAT TO DO: Immediately stop using the product and return it to the nearest Walmart or Toys R Us for a full refund. Consumers can also cut the two safety warning notices out of the slide and just return that portion. For additional information from Walmart, call (800) 925-6278 between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s website at www.walmartstores.com. For additional information from Toys R Us, call (800) 869-7787 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. ET Monday through Saturday and between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday, or visit the firm’s website at www.toysrus.com.
Image via http://www.parents.com/product-recalls/
Monday, March 19th, 2012
“On average, we’re still seeing a child every six minutes rushed to an emergency department in this country because of a stair-related injury,” a 10-year study conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has found.
The silver lining to the stark findings is that the number of injuries has actually fallen by 11 percent over the decade researchers have been following injury data. But one million children under the age of five visited emergency rooms during the study period, more than three-quarters of whom had head and neck injuries.
A notable finding was that many children were hurt while being carried up the stairs, and those children were three times more likely to require hospital care than those who had fallen while climbing stairs on their own.
Not every home can accommodate the wall-mounted safety gates that are recommended at the top of every flight of stairs, said Dr. Brian Smith, director of the Center, in a statement. And in many older homes, staircases are not straight, meaning that some stairs might be slightly shorter or deeper than others, causing a tripping hazard.
“Much more attention should be paid to making stairs safer and user friendly, especially through building codes,” said Smith in a statement.
What can parents do to safeguard their stairs? Smith offers these safety tips:
- Never let children play on stairs
- Always keep stairs free of toys and clutter to prevent tripping
- If you carry a child down the stairs, always keep one hand on the handrail for balance, and never carry anything else at the same time, and install safe handrails.
- Rails that are less than 6¼ inches around are safest, because they make it easier for you to put your hand around the entire rail with a firm power grip.
- Avoid wider, decorative handrails that are difficult to firmly grasp.
Image: Mom and baby on stairs, via Shutterstock.