In-home injury prevention practices for infants and toddlers: the role of parental beliefs, barriers, and housing quality

Health Educ Q. 1995 Feb;22(1):85-95. doi: 10.1177/109019819502200108.


The present research was designed to contribute to the empirical literature on the scope and determinants of parents' injury prevention practices among families living in disadvantaged, urban areas. One hundred fifty mothers were interviewed about their living environment when they brought their children (ages 6-36 months) to a hospital-based, pediatric primary care clinic. Only 37% of respondents reported that they knew their hot water temperature was 125 degrees or less. A majority (59%) of families reported that they did not use stair gates. More than one fourth (27%) of respondents said they did not have smoke detectors. Mothers uniformly reported very favorable attitudes and beliefs and strong support from others for in-home injury prevention practices. Factors significantly associated with the number of injury prevention practices implemented were family income, housing quality, and environmental barriers. Instead of attempting solely to persuade parents about the value of injury prevention practices, skill-based interventions are needed to help parents overcome specific barriers that result from living in substandard housing and having very limited financial resources.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accident Prevention
  • Accidents, Home / prevention & control*
  • Adult
  • Child Welfare*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Housing / standards*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Mothers / education
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Poverty
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Urban Health