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Too Many Parents Think Injuries Are 'Part of the Game'
Date:4/19/2011

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- With another season of warm-weather sports under way, experts are cautioning that many parents don't take sports injury prevention seriously enough -- that they consider commonplace sprains, bruises and pulled muscles "just part of the game."

About 10 percent of the 38 million American kids participating in sports each year are treated for a sports-related injury, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about half these injuries are preventable.

Nonetheless, in a recent national survey sponsored by Safe Kids USA, 86 percent of the parents surveyed said their child's injury was "just part of the game" and probably would have happened anyway.

The national telephone survey of 751 mothers and fathers who had at least one child aged 5 to 14 playing popular sports found parents generally expressed little concern about the number of potential injuries their kids could sustain playing team sports, with only concussions and dehydration causing "a great deal" or "quite a bit" of worry.

The most prevalent injuries -- sprains, pulled muscles, bruises, broken bones and lacerations -- caused little consternation in the parents surveyed.

And only 9 percent of fathers polled were likely to say the injury could have been prevented, compared to 17 percent of the mothers.

The survey, conducted by Hart Research Associates on behalf of Safe Kids USA, also revealed that about 25 percent more children participate in two or more team sports compared to a decade ago, with nearly a third playing multiple sports in a single season.

The survey was a follow-up to similar research done in 2000 that studied parents' knowledge, attitudes and behaviors on youth sports safety.

"The numbers are telling," Kyle Johnson, director of communications and marketing for Safe Kids Worldwide, said at Monday news confe
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