Healthy Living: Local News
Your Health: Doll Shows Effects Of Shaken Baby Syndrome
Story Updated: Jun 7, 2012
The counselors at Family Counseling Services in Watertown are experts on child abuse, but even they have been shocked to realize how quickly a baby can die from being shaken.
Five seconds - that's all it takes to shake an infant to death.
A shaken baby simulator is being used to demonstrate what happens to a child's brain.
The head lights up to show areas of the brain damaged by shaking.
When it lights up a certain way, it means the baby is either dead or paralyzed.
"It's within like five seconds, ten seconds, you can already see it lighting up in so many different areas. That was pretty shocking to me," said social worker Tyne McCreadie.
Shaken Baby Syndrome is serious.
In fact, there are 1,200 to 1,600 cases a year.
A quarter of those babies die.
The ones who survive, can suffer from learning disabilities, blindness, seizures, and more.
Tragically, it's easy to do.
"I didn't even feel like I was shaking it that hard. I mean it just takes like the slightest shake and the head is moving all over the place," said counselor Erin O'Connell.
Counselors will use the doll to teach parents and caretakers just how damaging, even deadly, shaking a baby can be.