The risk associated with legal firearms also includes accidents, including those that may be suffered by children in the event of failure to custody. Proper education of the shooters is essential for safe handling of weapons.
We report here the link to one of several guides to security of weapons specially guns and its safe keeping options that are available online.
We begin to devote space in this site also to accidents with weapons they face minors. Here we present a concise summary of the situation first. It will then be presented a card of practical advice for doctors, teachers and families.
RISK of WEAPONS IN CHILDREN AND TEENAGERS
In 2000 in the United States 3,913 young boys between 10 and 19 years old died from inflicted injuries with firearms (minimum, 2002) and in 2002 were 920 dead and 3758 injured by gunshot among children 5 to 16 years ( CDPC, 2002). Recent estimates indicate that one third of American homes with children there is at least one gun and that at least half of these not being stored properly. A study (Miller, 2002) shows that in the US where the weapons are more widespread there is a significantly higher number of deaths from injuries by firearms between 5 and 14 years for suicide, homicide and accidents.
Despite being illegal children under 18 to possess weapons, a search shows that it is more likely that they use the, than adults to commit murder or suicide; although it remains to investigate the source from which come the guns used in these cases of fatal injuries .
Suicide in the US is the third leading cause of death among young people under 19 and the weapons are involved in 65 % of deaths in this age group (Zavoski, 1995, CDCP, 1995).
A study (Grossman, 1999) reports that in 65% of cases of suicide and attempted suicide in adolescents the firearm used was owned by a member family, as well as in 23% of injuries and deaths unintentional. This study shows that more than 75% of the guns used came from the house of the victim, a relative or a friend. The authors advocate a safe storage of firearms as a strategy to reduce accidents with weapons among children. Another study (Grossman, 2005) showed that the main detention practices recommended as keep guns locked, unloaded, with the ammunition subkey and separate from the weapons themselves have a protective effect with respect to accidents and suicide attempts among young people live in homes where they are held weapons.
Various studies have dealt with studying the behavior of children in front of the firearms and the convictions of parents about. An experiment on the behavior of children from 8 to 12 years in front of a real gun (Jackman, 2001) shows that many of them handle or press the trigger even if they are not under the direct supervision of an adult. Work on parenting beliefs (Connor, 2003) about the behavior of children and adolescents between 5 and 15 years old when they find a gun show that about 87% of respondents believed that their children would not touch guns found, considering them too smart to do that. Only 40% base their beliefs on specific instructions provided to their children.
A study of Himle (2004) compares two different procedures of training skills to prevent deadly games with weapons in children. The Eddie Eagle Gun Safe Program teaches children to “stop, do not touch, leave the area and call an adult” (“Stop. Do not touch. Leave the area. Tell an adult.”) Should find a weapon and is the method most widely recognized and used according to the National Rifle Association. Other scholars propose instead a method of prevention based on active learning strategies. The latter method is more effective in the teaching of skill but still unsuccessful as regards the use of the same outside of the laboratory situations.
– American Academy of Pediatrics. Firearm-related injuries Affecting the pediatric population. Committee on Injury and Poison Prevention. Pediatrics. 2000 April; 105 (4 Pt 1): 888-95.http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/130/5/e1416.full
– Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Fatal and nonfatal suicide among adolescents attenpts-Oregon, 1988-93. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 1995; 44: 312-315, 321-323.http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00036910.htm
– Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web-based injury statistics query and reporting system (WISQARS). US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, 2002. Avaible at http://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars/ Accessed March 31,2004.
– Connor SM, Wesolowski KL. “They’re too smart for that”: predicting what children would do in the presence of guns. Pediatrics. February 2003; 111 (2): E109-14.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12563082
– Grossman DC, Mueller BA, Riedy C, Dowd MD, Villaveces A, J Prodzinski, Nakagawara J, Howard J, N Thiersch, Harruff R. Gun storage practices and risk of youth suicide and unintentional firearm injuries. JAMA. 9 February 2005; 293 (6): 707-14.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15701912
– Grossman DC, Reay DT, Baker SA. Self-inflicted and unintentional firearm injuries among children and adolescents: the source of the firearm. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1999 Aug; 153 (8): 875-8.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10437764