Skip 
Navigation Link
Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)
Resources
Basic Information
Development During Early Childhood, Toddler, and Preschool Stages Parenting Your Todder, Preschooler, and Young ChildToilet TrainingDisciplining Your Toddler, Preschooler, and Young ChildNurturing Your Toddler, Preschooler, and Young Child
Latest News
Most U.S. Parents Can't Find Good Childcare: SurveyVaccination Coverage High for Children Aged 19 to 35 MonthsHealth Tip: Fluoride Recommended For Young ChildrenHealth Tip: Sled SaferKids, Don't Touch the Toys at the Doctor's OfficeMore Young Kids Spending Lots of Time on Phones, TabletsFarsighted Kids Have Trouble Paying AttentionWhen Should You Rush Your Toddler to the ER?Sesame Street's Muppets to Help Kids Cope With TraumaHealth Tip: Keep Kids Safe From Fire and Heat'Green Schoolyards' May Bring Better Health to KidsAAP: Sliding on Lap Linked to Leg Fracture for Young ChildrenJoining Your Kid on That Playground Slide? Think AgainParents Getting Better at Using Car Seats SafelyUSPSTF Recommends Amblyopia Screening for 3- to 5-Year-OldsCalming Those Back-to-School JittersHow Preschoolers Begin Learning the Rules of Reading, SpellingHealth Tip: Supervise Kids Near CarsAlarms Could Save Children From Being Left in Hot CarsHealth Tip: Help Kids Sleep BetterHealth Tip: Encouraging Your Kids to BrushMaking the Most of Childhood Wellness VisitsHealth Tip: Getting Toddlers to Try New FoodsHealth Tip: Are My Toddler's Eating Habits Normal?Health Tip: When Children Grind Their TeethCould You Raise a 'No-Diaper' Baby?Health Tip: Children and ThumbsuckingWhen Parents Focus on Smartphones, Kids' Misbehaving Can RiseHealth Tip: Inspect Your Child's PlaygroundToddlers Who Drink Cow's Milk Alternatives May Be ShorterPreschoolers Who Know Snack-Food Brands on Road to Obesity?Playgrounds Aren't Always All Fun and GamesPrevalence of Visual Impairment in Preschoolers Expected to RiseUntreated Vision Problems Plague U.S. PreschoolersPoorer Kindergarteners Face a 'Double Dose of Disadvantage'PAS: Screen Time Affects Speech Development in Young ChildrenReading to Babies Translates Into More Literate PreschoolersA Toddler's Screen Time Tied to Speech DelayU.S. Toddlers Eat More French Fries Than VegetablesBrineura Approved for Rare Genetic Illness Affecting KidsHealth Tip: When Kids Feel AnxiousTiming of Lunch, Recess May Determine What Kids EatIs Kindergarten the New First Grade?Health Tip: Transitioning Toddlers to One NapHow to Protect Your Child From Accidental PoisoningBreast-Feeding May Not Lead to Smarter PreschoolersInjury Risk May Rise When Kids Play Just One SportPoor Sleep in Preschool Years Could Mean Behavior Troubles LaterRising Number of Kids Ill From Drinking Hand Sanitizers: CDCDoes TV Hinder Kindergarten-Readiness?
LinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Parenting
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Middle (8-11)

Playgrounds Aren't Always All Fun and Games

HealthDay News
by -- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
Updated: May 16th 2017

new article illustration

TUESDAY, May 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Playgrounds are supposed to be fun. But rusty bars, litter and poorly maintained equipment can make these seemingly kid-friendly zones downright dangerous, according to a group of emergency medicine physicians.

More than 200,000 children are treated in the emergency department each year for playground-related injuries -- a dramatic increase in recent years, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

And about 20,000 of those children get treated for a traumatic brain injury, including concussion, every year. Kids can also break a bone, or even develop internal bleeding due to accidents that occur on a playground.

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) noted, however, many of these injuries are preventable.

"Many playground injuries can be avoided if parents are mindful about the risks, and teach children to obey safety rules," ACEP president, Dr. Rebecca Parker, said in a news release from the organization. "We encourage children to get outside and play to promote a healthier lifestyle, but we want to make sure our children are as safe as possible."

Roughly 75 percent of playground-related injuries occur in public places. In most cases, the playground equipment is at a school or daycare center, research shows. The emergency physicians pointed out that parents, babysitters and other adult supervisors can help keep children safe on playgrounds by doing the following:

  • Pay attention. All children should be closely monitored on the playground. Even older kids need to be watched to ensure their safety.
  • Inspect the equipment. Check to make sure any playground apparatus a child is using is well-maintained. Be sure the area has enough cushioning to prevent injuries. It's also important to keep an eye out for broken bottles and other trash that could potentially cause an injury.
  • Don't battle crowds. If a playground is very busy, come back another time. Children should be clearly visible to an adult supervisor at all times.
  • Consider age. Children should only use playground equipment that is age-appropriate. Younger kids should not play on equipment that is intended for older children and vice versa.
  • Remove hoods and strings. Children should remove hoods or clothing with strings while at the playground. Hoods can block side vision and drawstrings could present a choking hazard.
  • Follow the rules. Children should be expected to adhere to playground safety rules. They shouldn't run, push or shove other children. Kids should also be taught to be mindful of their surroundings, such as not walking in front of a swing or climbing up the front of a slide rather than using the ladder.

More information

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has a public playground safety checklist.