Report shows playground concussions are on the rise

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Bumps and bruises on the playground are a part of growing up, but concussions?

Parents certainly hope that’s an exception, not the norm.

Perhaps it’s not the norm, but it is becoming more common according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The report published online Monday shows that playground concussions are increasing and most often involve monkey bars and swing sets.

Novant Health Pediatrician Dr. Maribeth Cengia explains that playground surface plays a big role in a head injury.

“Depending on what the surface is like or how quickly they fall, that could cause a concussion,” Cengia said.

A soft surface many playgrounds use is engineered wood fiber or “kid cushion,” which is specifically designed to protect the head from critical injury.

“It sort of disperses the fall to keep the head from getting shocked,” Jeff Shaver, construction supervisor with Greensboro Parks and Recreation, said.

Parents can look for soft surfaces and playground labels that say which age group the playground was designed for as preventative measures.

The study also suggests that parental supervision is another safety measure to protect children.

The study will be published in the June 2016 issues of Pediatrics.