Tags: crib | deaths | blamed | bumpers | study

Crib Deaths Blamed on Bumpers Nearly Triples in Latest 7-Year Period

Image: Crib Deaths Blamed on Bumpers Nearly Triples in Latest 7-Year Period
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By    |   Tuesday, 24 Nov 2015 02:44 PM

Forty-eight infant crib deaths from 1985 to 2012 have been linked to the presence of crib bumpers, according to a new study published Tuesday in The Journal Pediatrics.

Analyzing data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), researchers found that 32 of the 48 deaths were caused solely by crib bumpers and often occurred when babies became lodged between them and crib mattresses, LiveScience.com reported.

The study also found that crib deaths blamed on bumpers are increasing at a rapid rate. Between 2006 and 2012, 23 deaths were tied to crib bumpers — that's nearly triple the average number recorded by the CPSC in the three previous seven-year periods, LiveScience.com noted.

"Crib bumpers are killing kids," study author Dr. Bradley T. Thach, a professor at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, said in a statement. “The infant deaths we studied could have been prevented if the cribs were empty” of crib bumpers.

Of the 48 bumper-related deaths between 1985 and 2012, a significant portion of them were caused by design flaws involving too few ties, ties attached in the wrong places, ties that somehow became detached, frayed ribbons, or loose stuffing, according to NJ.com.

Ironically, crib bumpers were first introduced as a safety measure meant to prevent babies’ heads or limbs from becoming stuck in the crib slats. A countrywide shift in crib slat construction in 1973 that reduced the gaps between the slats, however, was introduced to prevent these incidents from happening, NJ.com reported.

Researchers from Washington University in St. Louis also published a recent study declaring that crib bumper installations are unnecessary because babies are highly unlikely to suffer any injuries from the slats, according to UPI. In addition, the crib bumpers fail to prevent babies from poking their limbs through the slats and becoming wedged between the bumper and the slats.

"When a baby's nose and mouth is covered by a bumper, the infant can suffocate when his or her airway becomes blocked, or from breathing oxygen-depleted air," Dr. N.J. Scheers, a former manager of the CPSC’s Infant Suffocation Project, said in a press release, according to UPI. "So if bumpers had not been in the cribs, these babies would not have died."

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Forty-eight infant crib deaths from 1985 to 2012 have been linked to the presence of crib bumpers, according to a new study published Tuesday in The Journal Pediatrics.
crib, deaths, blamed, bumpers, study
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2015-44-24
Tuesday, 24 Nov 2015 02:44 PM
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