Increase in Outdoor Activities Spurs Higher Risk for Child Injury

07/4/2009

Experts Launch http://www.aftertheinjury.org to Help Parents and Kids to a Full Recovery

"Trauma season" is the unfortunate nickname for summertime in the nation's hospitals. Warmer weather and increased outdoor activity level brings an estimated 3 million children under the age of 15 into emergency rooms in summer due to unintentional injuries. Among the most common injuries are motor vehicle crashes, water-related accidents, pedestrian accidents, falls, dog bites and bicycle, skateboard and rollerblade incidents.

To help parents deal with kids' injuries in the summer and year-round, a team of experts at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia today launched a new website, After the Injury, at http://www.AfterTheInjury.org. The new site takes the best from science and practice to allow parents to watch brief videos, download tip sheets, and create a personalized care plan based on their child's individual situation. The web site was developed by a team of behavioral researchers, trauma surgeons and trauma nurses, based on nearly a decade of research on childhood injury and its emotional effect on kids and their parents.

"With all the doctors, nurses, and therapists who treat a child when he or she is first hurt, it's still parents who play the most important role in their child's physical and emotional recovery," said Flaura Koplin Winston, MD, PhD, director of the Center for Injury Research and Prevention and co-developer of AfterTheInjury.org. "But often, parents are unsure of how they can best help their children adjust after they've been hurt. While it is important to tend to the wounds and rehabilitation, it is just as important to remember to look beyond the physical injuries. We created AfterTheInjury.org with the guidance of parents, to help them find the information they want, exactly when they need it."

The web site serves as a comprehensive and free resource to help parents help their kids achieve a full physical and emotional recovery, and includes expert advice on everything from how to handle a hospital visit, to cast care and pain management, to what to do if a child is having nightmares after the accident. The site addresses topics such as:
 

  • Injury care and pain management for children
  • How to use crutches and care for a cast
  • Caring for head and abdominal injuries
  • How to handle an emergency room visit or time in the hospital
  • How to recognize and "rate" children's emotional reactions to injury
  • How to talk with a child about an accident
  • Help for parents dealing with their own reactions to a child's injury
  • How parents and children can get back to life as usual following an injury or accident


"In the first few days after an injury or accident, many children feel a little upset, jumpy or worried. Parents might notice that their child seems upset when something reminds them of a scary part of what happened. Most kids do fine, and these emotional reactions usually start to get better within a few weeks," said Nancy Kassam-Adams, PhD, associate director for Behavioral Research at The Center for Injury Research and Prevention. "We designed AfterTheInjury.org to help parents know what to expect, get tips for how to help their child, and how to find additional help if they need it."

The new web site offers parents easy access to credible information, tips, and practical tools to help support their children's emotional recovery. The Web Marketing Association recently presented a 2008 Web Award for Outstanding Achievement in Website Development to the site. For more information about emotional reactions to injury or to download resources and tip sheets, visit http://www.AfterTheInjury.org.

About The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation's first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals and pioneering major research initiatives, Children's Hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country, ranking second in National Institutes of Health funding. In addition, its unique family-centered care and public service programs have brought the 430-bed hospital recognition as a leading advocate for children and adolescents. For more information, visit http://www.chop.edu.

 

CONTACT: Dana Mortensen
The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
(267)426-6092
mortensen@email.chop.edu

SOURCE The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia