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Dr. Max Gomez: Study Says Baby-Gate Related Injuries Are On An Alarming Rise

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NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Baby-gates are designed to protect children, but the gates themselves may be creating problems, according to a new study.

Part of the problem may be due to the false sense of security that the gates give parents, but the type of gate, it’s location in the home, and the presence of other children may also play a role.

Pediatric nurse and mother Jessica Fannon knows first hand how common injuries around the house can be.

“I thought my whole house was child proofed. I’m a nurse. I didn’t think anything could happen to my child and it did,” Fannon said.

As CBS 2’s Dr. Max Gomez explained, Jessica’s daughter managed to push past a baby-gate and tumbled down fourteen steps.

Injuries like that one are becoming more common according to a newly published study by Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

“Despite the voluntary standards and the recalls that we’ve seen for gates we’re still seeing a really significant increase in the number of injuries related to gates,” Dr. Lara McKenzie said.

McKenzie led the study which found that from 1990 through 2010 more than 37,000 children were treated in emergency rooms for baby-gate related injuries.

Kids under two were mostly hurt falling down stairs, while children aged 2 through 6 cut or bruised themselves while climbing gates.

Despite those findings Dr. McKenzie strongly recommends that families continue to use stair gates while employing the proper precautions.

“Pressure mounted gates are great at the bottom of the stairs or between rooms, but you don’t want to use a pressure mounted gate at the top of the stairs because they’re too easily pushed through,” she explained.

That is exactly what Jessica’s daughter did.

“Luckily, she ended up being okay. They assessed her, did scans, she was totally fine. But, I was very lucky,” Fannon said.

In some cases older children injured themselves while attempting to climb over gates that were installed for their younger siblings.

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