Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS) is the collection of signs and symptoms resulting from the violent shaking of an infant or small child. It is a form of child abuse. In America every year an estimated 1,200 - 1,400 children are shaken for whom treatment is sought. Of these tiny victims, 25 -30% die as a result of their injuries. The rest will have lifelong complications. It is likely that many more babies suffer from the effects of SBS yet no one knows because SBS victims rarely have any external evidence of trauma.
Other facts about Shaken Baby Syndrome:
The average age of the victim is between three and eight months. Approximately 60 percent of shaken babies are male.
People who shake babies are almost always parents or caregivers, who act rashly out of stress, anger or frustration when the baby is crying uncontrollably. Other triggering events include toilet training difficulties and feeding problems.
It is estimated that males, often in their early 20s (usually the baby's father or the mother's boyfriend) are responsible in 65 to 90 percent of SBS cases.
Immediate consequences for the baby: Cessation of breathing and heartbeat, or extreme irritability, seizures, limp arms and legs, decreased level of consciousness and vomiting.
Long-term consequences for the baby: Learning disabilities, physical disabilities, partial or total blindness, hearing impairments, speech disabilities, cognitive disabilities, cerebral palsy, seizures, behavior disorders, death.
Consequences for the person who hurts the baby: A lifetime of remorse, and maybe time in prison.
The third week in April is SHAKEN BABY SYNDROME AWARENESS WEEK.
1. We Must Stop SBS
2. Must Raise Money To Support Familys With SBS