(Cleveland) - It’s a hidden danger in nearly every home.
A new study finds more than 17,000 children are treated in American emergency rooms each year for injuries related to televisions.
Dr. Michael Macknin did not take part in the study but is a pediatrician at Cleveland Clinic Children’s.
“Generally what happens it is a tip-over injury and it’s a result of not having the tv properly mounted,“ says Dr. Macknin.
Researchers found that almost half of the tv-related injuries that came into the ER were caused by a tv falling off a dresser or armoire. About 30% of the injuries occurred when the television fell off of an entertainment center or tv stand.
Kids 5 and under were hurt the most and boys accounted for 60% of all cases.
“Over half the people in america have more than 3 tv’s in their homes, so they may have their flat-screen mounted properly, but then their old cathode-ray tv- they don’t have any place to put it, they throw it onto a dresser, the child climbs up the dresser and the television and the dresser can fall on top of them,“ says Dr. Macknin.
The most common injuries are to the head and neck, which can be serious. So, researchers say to avoid putting the remote control or toys on top of the tv.
They also recommend using safety anchors or anti-tip devices on televisions to decrease the risk. Dr. Macknin says start with the manufacturer when it comes to finding out how to properly mount your tv or flat-screen.
“The manufacturer should be able to help them, where they buy the television or they can go to a hardware store. If you’re going to put a mount, particularly on a cathode-ray tv, you’d want to look at the back of that television and see whether or not a bracket or a strap would work best,“ says Dr. Macknin.
Dr. Macknin even recommends taking a picture of the back of your television with the camera on your phone and taking it with you to the store to ensure buying the correct mounting bracket.
Complete findings for this study are online in the journal “Pediatrics.”
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