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Kentucky and Indiana are at the bottom of the list when it comes to child abuse in the nation. A local group of physicians wants to change that during National Child Abuse Prevention Month.
Therese Sirles, the director of the Children's Hospital Foundation Office of Child Advocacy of Kosair Children's Hospital explained the dangers and risks of shaking a baby. She says that when parents shake their babies, it's usually because they are having problems coping.
Sirles says when a baby is shaken, the brain whips back and forth in the skull cavity. It causes bleeding to the brain and damages the tissue. That damage can cause death, permanent spinal injuries, paralysis and blindness.
There are much better ways to sooth a crying baby and yourself. Sirles says parents should make sure the baby's basic needs are met. Make sure the baby has a clean diaper, is fed and is at a comfortable temperature. Sirles says it's important to understand that sometimes babies just cry. If you find yourself having troubles coping, put the baby in a safe place, like a crib, step out of the room and take a quick break.
If you find yourself losing control you can reach out for help. The Childhelp National Abuse hotline number is 800-4-A-CHILD(800-422-4453). You can find out more at The Partnership to Eliminate Child Abuse website at www.pecakyin.org.