Bounce House Boo-Boos

The Not So Fun Side of these Party Staples




A staple at amusement parks, fast-food restaurants and kids’ backyard parties, inflatable bounce houses look and sound like a lot of fun—yet can cause problems. “I was surprised by the number of injuries, especially by the rapid increase,” says Dr. Gary A. Smith, lead author of a recent study by the Center for Injury Research and Policy that he founded at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in Columbus, Ohio. From fewer than 1,000 injuries sending kids 17 and under to emergency rooms in 1995, the number skyrocketed to nearly 11,000 in 2010. Most injuries result from falls or collisions within the bounce houses or from falling out of them; only 3 percent required a hospital stay.

Bounce house injuries are similar to those associated with trampolines, and more than a third of the study injuries involved children 5 and younger. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends against letting children younger than 6 use full-size trampolines, and Smith says barring that age group from even smaller, home-use bounce houses makes sense. In addition, the commission recommends limiting use to fewer bouncers at a time and not allowing younger children to participate at the same time as older kids.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Naps Boost Toddler Talk

Toddlers under age three that took the most daytime naps developed larger vocabularies over time, British researchers found.

Negative Stereotypes Sabotage Girl Soccer Players

Teenage girls performed worst in a soccer ball-dribbling drill after reading an article about the perceived incompetence of female soccer players.

Sedentary Kids Lag in Reading Skills

Young Finnish children that tend to be sedentary showed lower reading scores than peers that are generally physically active.

Kids Going Online at Bedtime Sleep Poorly

British kids between 6 and 19 that used devices within 90 minutes of falling asleep were more likely to sleep badly and be sleepy during the day, which also can lead to poor diet choices.

Early-to-Bed Kids at Less Risk of Obesity

Young children that were tucked into bed before 8 p.m., when examined 10 years later, had less than half the obesity rate of those that had gone to bed after 9 p.m.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags