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Child Injury Is Predictable, Preventable, and Personal
Prevent Child Injury has released a toolkit for use during the week of June 23-27, 2014 to highlight that unintentional injury- the leading cause of death and acquired disability in children- is predictable and preventable. Resources and user guides are available on a wide range of injury topics, including child passenger safety, safe sleep, teen driving, TV tip-over, and medication safety. To learn more about these important child injury topics, visit: http://www.preventchildinjury.org/
The League of American Bicyclists has observed May as National Bike Month since 1956. The month-long event showcases the many benefits of bicycling, while encouraging more people to try biking. This organization promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation, and works towards a bicycle-friendly America through advocacy and education efforts. Bike to Work Week will be celebrated May 12-16, and National Bike to Work Day is May 16, 2014. This event promotes the healthy, sustainable, and active transportation of biking.
The first-ever National Bike to School Day was celebrated on May 9, 2012, which encouraged children to safely bicycle or walk to school, and was made up of 950 local events in 49 states. The event grew to 1,700 schools in all 50 states in 2013. This year, Bike to School Day is May 7. National Bike to School Day provides an opportunity for schools to partner to celebrate National Bike Month. There are several benefits to the event, including establishing healthier habits of physical activity, promoting safety in the community, and reducing traffic congestion. For more information, visit: http://walkbiketoschool.org/ready/why-walk-or-bike. Many local organizations sponsor Bike to School or Bike to Work days during May, and it’s a great time to talk about bike safety.
Bicycling is a leading cause of recreation injury as well as a leading cause of sports-related head injuries in children. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, cycling injuries played a role in 86,000 of 447,000 sports-related head injuries treated in emergency departments in 2009. Bicycle skill development and safety education are important components in preventing bicycle injury.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has the following safe riding tips to prevent bicycle injuries:
When bicycling on the road, remember to:
For more safety tips, visit http://www.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/pedbimot/bike/kidsandbikesafetyweb/index.htm
May 19-25 marks the 10th annual Recreational Water Illness and Injury Prevention Week. This observance highlights how to maximize the health benefits of water-based physical activity while avoiding water-associated illness and injury. For more information on how to be safe in the water, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/water-safety/index.html
A new report from the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) Fire Analysis and Research Division highlights the importance of working smoke alarms. The report indicates that three out of five home fire deaths resulted from fires on properties without the protection of working smoke alarms, and more than one-third of home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes without any smoke alarm. Working smoke alarms reduces the risk of dying by a half in reported home structure fires, but smoke alarm failures were found to be most commonly due to missing, disconnected or dead batteries. The study also found that interconnected smoke alarms were more likely to operate and alert occupants of home fires compared to those powered solely by batteries.
The NFPA follows the “Once a month, Once a year, Once a decade” rule, meaning that home smoke alarms should be tested at least once a month using the test button, change the batteries once a year if the smoke alarm uses standard batteries, and replace the smoke alarm with a new one once every 10 years.
For the full report and safety tips, visit: http://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Fire%20Protection%20Systems/ossmokealarms.pdf
National Poison Prevention Week was established by the United States Congress in 1961 to focus attention on the dangers of potentially poisonous medicines and chemicals, and to outline steps to prevent poisonings. A poison is defined as “any substance, including medication, that is harmful to your body if too much is eaten, inhaled, injected or absorbed through the skin.” Anything can be poisonous if used in the wrong way, including household items. Like that of all injuries, most poisonings are unintentional; however, some can be inflicted intentionally through self-harm or by another individual. Injuries and poisonings affect all groups of people, regardless of age, race or economic status. In 2011, 1,084 Hoosiers died from poisoning, which accounted for 26.9 percent of all injury deaths.
The toll-free Poison Help Line, 1-800-222-1222, connects callers to their local poison center. Poison centers are more than just help lines for parents of young children and they offer advice to anyone, including adults and health care providers. More than two million poisonings are reported every year to the nation’s poison centers and about 50 percent of poisonings include children under the age of six. During 2011, the Indiana Poison Center reported more than 68,500 calls for help.
Some tips to prevent poisoning include:
Prevent Child Injury created a new toolkit for National Poison Prevention Week, which can be utilized to promote safe use, storage, and disposal of medicines and vitamins. The toolkit contains a user guide, project materials, and existing resources for medication safety. The toolkit can be found here.
March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) results from a blunt or penetrating injury to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. TBI occurs in many ways, including from a fall in the home or on a playground, in a motor vehicle collisions, or being struck by an object or another person. The severity of TBI ranges from mild concussions to more severe, life-threatening injuries. There were 43,034 emergency department visits and 4,748 hospitalizations due to TBI in Indiana in 2012. TBI can be prevented, and to find out more information about TBI, please visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website.
Scald injuries is the main focus for the American Burn Association’s Burn Awareness Week 2014. Scald injuries occur when hot liquids or steam causes damage to one or more layers of the skin. Scalds are most likely to occur in the kitchen and the bathroom, and some common sources of scalds include hot tap water, hot food or beverages, and steam. Scalds are the second leading cause of all burn injuries, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Additionally, children, older adults, and people with disabilities are especially at risk for scalds.
Scalds can be prevented through a few easy environmental and behavioral changes. The American Burn Association recommends the following safety tips to decrease your risk for scalds.
The interactive National Drug IQ Challenge can be accessed starting January 27, 2014 at http://drugfactsweek.drugabuse.gov/iqchallenge. NIDA scientists will host a chat day on January 28, 2014 from 8 am to 6 pm EST to provide thousands of teens the answers to their questions about drugs.
Winter provides new challenges in the injury prevention world. Home fires are more prevalent due in part by an increase in cooking and heating fires, holidaty decorations, and winter storms. Below are some tips to keep your family safe this winter.
The National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications.
Capitol police personnel will be on location Friday, October 25 in downtown Indianapolis by the President Lincoln statute in front of the Indiana Government Center complex to collect discarded drugs from 11 am to 1 pm.
Fire Prevention Week is October 6-12. The theme this year is "Prevent Kitchen Fires." The National Fire Protection Association indicates that cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries. Read some of the following information to learn how to "Get Cookin' with Fire Safety!"
The end of summer means an end to outdoor activities like swimming and boating for Hooisers, but it's a great time to bring awareness to all-too-common injuries resulting from falls. Each year, one in three Americans over the age of 65 fall, which can result in serious health consequences and injuries. National Fall Prevention Awareness Day is September 22, 2013, better known as the first day of fall. By taking some simple steps, you can reduce your risk or the risk of a loved one of suffering injuries due to falls.
Summer is a great time to engage in outdoors activities such as swimming, biking, playing outside, and grilling, but it is also a time when accidents and injuries occur. By taking simple, common-sense precautions, you can have fun and stay safe at the same time.
Playground and Bike Safety
Injury Prevention Epidemiologist, Division of Trauma and Injury Prevention