How many times have you gone down a slide with your child or grandchild in your lap, assuming it was safer than letting them free fall by themselves?
Well, you may want to rethink your playground habits.
Emily Harrington, a Central Illinois mom writing on ChambanaMoms.com, shares her scary tale of an afternoon at the park with her toddler:
I situated him on my lap and away we went. In the second it took to reach the bottom, the rubber sole of his shoe grazed the side of the slide. His shoe caught and sent his left leg backward as we propelled forward. The rest was a blur of tears. He was inconsolable. At that moment I didn’t even know anything serious could be wrong. There was no drama—no crash, no fall, no crack, no blood, no bruise, no bump—not even a scratch. Surely he was going to stop crying and everything would be OK. He didn’t. I tried to set him down and his left leg just shook as it hovered above the ground.
We raced to the emergency department where we were told he had fractured the long bone under his knee, the tibia. After nine days in a splint and a four-week prognosis in a cast, my son will thankfully never remember this time in his life. My husband and I, however, will never forget it as long as we live.
And if you assume this was just a freak accident, think again. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons notes that a study “found a relationship between shinbone (tibia) fractures and young children going down a slide on the lap of an adult.” According to the AAOS, in many of these cases, the child’s leg became stuck, but the adult and child could not stop moving down the slide. In other situations, the child’s leg became twisted during the ride down.
Bottom line: The next time you’re at the playground, reconsider putting your kid on your lap on the slide. Try supervising them while standing on the ground instead.
Related Stories This Mom Doesn’t Force Her Kids to Share First Water Park For People with Disabilities New Report Questions Safety of Many Sunscreens