In an effort to warn other parents about the danger of going down the slide with their kids, a mother has posted a photo of her daughter breaking her leg while the two were going down the slide at a park. Heather Clare, the mother in the photo, says she feels compelled to let other parents know that putting a kid on their lap to head down the slide puts them at serious risk for injury.
The photo clearly shows the young girl’s leg bending as Clare is smiling, completely oblivious to what is happening. Once she realized what had happened, she quickly took her daughter to the ER, where a doctor lectured her for her accidental poor parenting decision before letting her know just how common this injury is.
“I had no idea. I thought everyone took their kids down the slide,” Clare wrote in her Facebook post. “I strongly feel every playground should have a warning sign…”
Research shows that kids going down slides on their parents’ laps is indeed one of the most common causes of injuries for young children. In 2017, a study found that “more than 300,000 children had been injured on playground slides in the past 13 years.”
According to Dr. Charles Jennissen, a co-author of the study from the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, most parents truly have no idea they are even putting their kids in harm’s way when they head down the slide together.
“In my experience parents are totally flabbergasted. This is something they hadn’t heard about, didn’t know it might be a risk factor,” Dr. Jennissen told Fatherly. “In fact, a lot say if they had known they wouldn’t have gone down with the child.”
Hopefully, posts like Clare’s will help parents become more aware of the potential consequences of this seemingly innocent activity. Her message has clearly resonated with Facebook’s parenting community, as her photo and warning have been shared almost 100,000 times in just four days.