Curious children and young adolescents have little fear of playing with shiny objects that they find. That’s why, this holiday season, take steps to make sure that the shiny object isn’t a gun.
“Someone as young as 2 years old can pull the trigger on a handgun,” said Lillian Liao, MD, associate professor of surgery in the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine at UT Health San Antonio. She is also the pediatric trauma and burn director at University Hospital.
Firearm injuries in adults and children have increased 20% during this very-stressful year, including a 35% rise in pediatric firearm injuries.
Even more troubling, “The number of deaths by firearm due to suicide in children is drastically increasing,” Dr. Liao said. “The holidays are difficult for some people, and when you add the social isolation of the pandemic, it is especially important to focus on safe storage of firearms to keep the people around us safe.”