Health Watch - Safe Kids: Open Windows

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general iHnformation only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we're talking about keeping kids safe. At this time of year, many families cool their homes by opening windows, or they spend time on balconies and porches. That means more children may be injured due to accidental falls.

Dr. Todd Maxson, a surgeon at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and director of the trauma program at Children's Medical Center of Dallas, says the problem is a dangerous combination of children's curiosity and their lack of experience. They want to look out the window or over the side of the balcony, but they don't realize how easy it might be to fall. He suggests keeping furniture and cribs away from windows. Don't open floor-level windows, and don't rely on window screens to keep children safe. Supervise children on balconies or high porches. Balcony or porch railings should be at least eight inches apart so children don't get their heads stuck between them.

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June 2006

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