Playgrounds go through some rigorous tests to keep our precious children safe. They area analyzed to make sure that everything meets safety standards and should be installed and inspected professionally to make sure everything is properly assembled to minimize injury. Though, safety standards are not always maintained to keep these play areas up to date which is now showing an increase in playground concussions. New government studies show that monkey bars and swings are usually involved in these concussions.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, their study showed that almost 10 percent of children annually received traumatic brain injuries. This study examined about 215,000 children who were treated for fall injuries during the years 2001-2013. The ages of these children were about 14 and younger. Other discoveries include that each year the amount of brain injuries have increased each year except for in 2012. This may mean that more kids are not playing on playgrounds or that parents understand the seriousness of having a concussion or brain injuries so they are bringing their kids to the emergency room more so than before.
As a parent you should try to familiarize yourself with concussions and their symptoms. Concussions result from a blow to the head, either with or without loss of consciousness and temporarily disrupts brain function. Some symptoms may include headache, nausea, memory loss, vomiting, dizziness, confusion, lack of coordination, memory loss and excessive fatigue. These symptoms can last up to weeks so it is best to get your child checked out a soon as you see some of these symptoms.
So what can we do to prevent these injuries from happening? Make sure that climbers and swings are in good condition and seem secure. If they move when children are playing on them then do not allow your child to play on it. Also, make sure there is adequate surfacing. Climbers and swings require a thicker safety surfacing than most other pieces of equipment. Depending on what type of surfacing is underneath the equipment will determine the thickness of safety surfacing. Wood mulch and sand require more surfacing than rubber mulch, poured in place and turf. Also, make sure your child is playing on the appropriate piece of equipment for their age. If your child is too big or small for the equipment they are playing on then they will more than likely get hurt due to that piece of equipment being geared for a different age group. Another very important safety precaution is to keep an eye on your child. You can normally spot when your child is doing something dangerous that will cause them harm. The best defense against injury is watching your child to make sure they are safe.
Making sure our children are safe when they are playing is most important. If you see that there is not enough surfacing or equipment is not safe then you should contact the right person to make sure these issues get resolved. By looking out for these things you are not only protecting your own child but other children as well. We can be proactive and stop these concussions from happening by taking the right steps and being knowledgeable.