October 6, 2010

Kitchen Dangers: Keeping Kids off Countertops

(Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Don't think just because they're small they can't reach what you place on the counter. Children as young at 12 months old can actually reach kitchen countertops, putting them at high risk of burns and other severe pains.

In a recent study, "How Far Toddlers Can Reach onto a Standard Kitchen Countertop," researchers pushed children, aged 12 to 23 months, to reach for a toy phone that was placed on top of a 36-inch countertop.

The results showed an average of 41 out of the 54 children who participated, were able to reach to some distance on the counter. A majority of the younger children were able to reach the countertop and grab the phone simply by standing on their tip-toes.

"Findings from the research are important as it will help us reduce pain, financial costs and parental distress associated with scald-related burns to children, and the information can be used to better educate parents," David Allasio, MSW, LMSW, Children's Hospital of Michigan, and lead study author, was quoted as saying.

As a result, many parents have been urged to put dangerous liquids or objects toward the back of the countertop, in order to lessen the chances of a catastrophe.

SOURCE: American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition, Oct. 5, 2010.