I guess we really shouldn't be all that surprised that there are kids who get hurt in the process of sitting in something moms use on a daily basis, but would you believe that a staggering 24,000 children are sent to the ER due to shopping cart injuries each year? That's 66 kids per day, if you do the math.
A new Clinical Pediatrics study found that shopping cart safety standards are not up to par. The number of kids suffering concussions and head injuries while using them is on the rise.
A whopping 70.4 percent of accidents are due to children falling out of the cart. As for the remaining 30 or so percent? Running into the cart, falling over it, having a body part trapped in it, or having the cart tip over also resulted in injuries to kids.
And considering how many of us strap our kids into those carts without a second thought -- this information is definitely not something we should take lightly.
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All it takes is a couple of seconds -- and your child could wind up seriously injured. A few months ago, I was behind a lady and her toddler in the grocery store check-out line, and all of a sudden, the little girl stood up in the seat of the shopping cart and proceeded to reach for something on the candy shelf. I managed to catch her as she was falling out of the cart -- but I still remember my heart dropping into my stomach when I saw her start to go down.
And I guess that brings us to one safety reminder we can never ignore when it comes to strapping our kids in -- and that's actually strapping them in. Even if you think your child is too big to fall out of the seat, you never know when he or she is going to try and climb out. Use the strap every single time.
Also, it's unrealistic for us to be able to keep our eyes on our kids every single second and pick out our food at the same time. That is why I always at least kept one hand on the cart when my son was little even if I had to look away for a moment. At least this way, you will be able to feel your child starting to crawl out -- and it also lessens the possibility of the cart tipping over should it become top heavy.
But it's also important to note that not all of the injuries reported are due to falls -- so your child doesn't necessarily have to be sitting in the cart to suffer an injury. If you have an older toddler, it can be tempting to let him stand in front of you kind of "riding" on the foot bar of the cart while you push it. But you always run the risk of it tipping and falling on top of them if that happens -- so make sure to be extra careful. (Or don't allow this behavior at all.)
Have you ever worried about your child's safety while using a shopping cart?
Image via seanmfreese/Flickr