Introduction: A nonfatal injury occurs every 2 seconds in the United States, and approximately 30,000 children die each year from injury-related causes. The U.S. Department of Health identified the reduction of unintentional injuries as a major health goal. The current study reports on a focus group discussion conducted with adolescent mothers to examine their beliefs and practices regarding injury prevention.
Method: Seventeen first-time adolescent mothers participated in the focus group. Participants responded to questions about important aspects of mothering, causes of injury, and strategies to prevent injuries. Responses were categorized.
Results: No mother spontaneously identified injury prevention as an important part of mothering. More than half of all participants believed that injuries are unpreventable. Further, mothers identified a limited number of strategies to prevent injury. None of the mothers reported having discussed injury prevention with their child's pediatrician.
Discussion: Implications for care are discussed, including the need to address issues of injury prevention during well-baby care, the potential benefits of home visits, and specific challenges in implementing The Injury Prevention Program with young mothers.