More than 5,000 children fall out of windows each year, a new study shows.
Researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy of the Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio studied emergency department information from 1990 through 2008 and found that approximately 5,200 children and adolescents were treated for injuries because they had fallen out of windows.
The research was published in the journal Pediatrics.
The most common injuries occurred in the head and face region. The most frequent injury diagnoses were soft tissue injury and brain and head injury.
Window fall injuries are serious, the study's senior author Gary Smith said in a hospital press release. In fact, one out of every four children in our study was hospitalized as a result of their injury. We know from successful programs in New York City and Boston that child injuries due to falls from windows can be prevented.
The researchers provided a few preventative tips for parents to help keep their children from falling out of windows. The advice included using window stops and installing window guards on windows that are on the second-story or higher of buildings in which children live or frequent.
Also, since more than 190 children in the study fell out of a window after climbing on furniture, researchers advise parents to keep furniture away from windows.
In addition, it is important for parents to understand that window screens will not prevent a child from falling out of a window, Smith said. There were many children in our study who pushed a screen out of a window and then fell from the window.