OHSU

Falls

Falls in the home account for one-third of emergency department visits. According to National Safe Kids Campaign, eighty percent of fall-related injuries among children 4 and younger occur in the home. Practice the following guidelines for you and your child:

Safety Tips 

  • Schedule routine appointments for physical, eye and ear exams. 
  • Ask your pediatrician or pharmacist about drug interactions and potential side effects (like dizziness) for prescription or over-the-counter medicine.
  • Light your home adequately, and use the highest watt bulbs recommended for lamps and fixtures.
  • Give your child a nightlight or flashlight for getting out of bed at night.
  • Use rubber mats or non-skid strips in the tub or shower.
  • Use a shower seat in the tub or shower if needed.
  • Have your child wear low-heeled, non-skid shoes. Always have shoelaces tied properly.
    Don’t use throw rugs.
  • Pick up toys.
  • Keep items used most often in easy-to-reach locations.
  • Don’t allow your child to carry items that are too heavy. 
  • Close supervision of infants and children will prevent most falls.

Window Safety:

  • Keep windows locked when they are closed.
  • Never let your child open windows by themselves.
  • Prevent windows from opening more than four inches by using window guards.
  • Don’t place furniture near windows. 
  • Know that screens don’t prevent falls.

Furniture Safety:

  • Don’t let your child jump on beds or sofas.
  • Don’t place infant carriers on furniture; instead, leave them on the floor.
  • Do not allow a child under the age of six to sleep in the top bed of bunk beds.
  • Once your child reaches 35 inches tall, they should no longer sleep in a crib.
  • Once your infant can sit up, place the crib mattress on the lowest level.

Staircase Safety:

  • Use safety gates at the top and bottom of staircases.
  • Do NOT use tension gates at the top of stairs; instead use a hardware-mounted gate.
  • Keep stairs clear of toys and other objects.
  • Keep staircases well lit.
  • Teach your child to use the hand railing.
  • Never allow your child to slide down railings.

For more information:

503 418-5666
safety@ohsu.edu

Location:

Doernbecher Children's Hospital Lobby
700 SW Campus Drive Portland, OR 97239

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