Crib-related accidents send 26 children to U.S emergency rooms daily and result in more than 110 deaths annually.
The researchers found that between 1990 and 2008, some 181,654 children under the age of 2 were treated in U.S. emergency rooms for injuries related to cribs, playpens and bassinets, the majority as a result of falls from cribs that caused injuries to the head, neck or face.
Only a small fraction of the injuries over the 19-year period, just 5.5% were the result of child becoming caught or wedged in the crib's protective bars. But such accidents accounted for the greatest number of fatalities that could not be related to some other cause, such as sudden infant death syndrome.
The vast majority of the children admitted to the ER for crib-related accidents during the study period, nearly 94% were treated and released. But an estimated 2,140 died as a result of their injuries.
The researchers from Nationwide Children's Hospital said a continued strengthening and enforcement of crib safety standards would protect more young children from harm because the vast majority of the injuries about 83% in all, occurred in cribs rather than bassinets or playpens.
But they also said parents can do several things to help protect their children, including:
• Select cribs that meet all current safety standards do not have a drop side and are not old, broken or modified.
• Avoid cribs with cut-outs, decorative corner posts, knobs that stick up more than 1/16th of an inch or slats that are more than 2 3/8 inches apart.
Has your child suffered any injuries as a result of a crib?