Author(s): Morrongiello BA, Ondejko L, Littlejohn A
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Abstract Multimethod strategies (i.e., questionnaires, injury-event recording diaries, and telephone and home interviews) were used to study in-home injuries experienced by toddlers over a 3-month period and to identify anticipatory prevention strategies implemented by parents, on a room-by-room basis, that effectively reduced child injury risk. Three types of prevention strategies were used by parents: environmental (e.g., hazard removal, safety devices to prevent access), parental (e.g., increased supervision, parent modification of their own behavior to decrease injury risk for their child), and child based (e.g., teaching rules or prohibitions to promote safety), with parents often using a combination of these. Use of these strategies, and their efficacy to reduce injury risk, varied on a room-by-room basis. Nonetheless, two general conclusions are supported: (1) An emphasis on child-based strategies never decreases, and often elevates, risk of injury to toddlers; and (2) parental and environmental strategies, either singularly or in combination, serve protective functions that significantly reduce children's risk of in-home injury. Although it is commonplace for parents of children between 2 and 3 years of age to transition from environmental and supervision strategies to the use of teaching and rule-based ones to manage injury risk, doing so too early clearly elevates children's risk of injury in the home.
This article was published in J Pediatr Psychol
and referenced in Clinics in Mother and Child Health