Newly analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) shows that over the last two decades an estimated 45,398 children under the age of 3 years were treated in the ER for injuries related to common childhood items – baby bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups. That works out to about one child being treated in the ER every 4 hours. The data shows that most of the injuries, occur due to a toddler taking a tumble while using a bottle, pacifier or sippy. Common injuries treated include lacerations or contusions to the mouth or face. One of the researchers told MedPage Today, “Parents do a lot of things to baby proof their home and make sure children’s toys are safe, but often don’t give a second thought to these products.” There are a couple of easy fixes to help prevent these type of injuries though. Authors on the study advise that kids not use bottles, pacifiers or sippy cups longer than the specific ages recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and by the age of one year, parents should help their child transition to a real cup (without a lid). Another way to prevent injury is to encourage your little one to sit while he drinks or eats. For tots who are unsteady on their feet, walking around with objects in their mouths is a good way to get injured.
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