It was an accident! We’ve all exclaimed that. Accident or not, intentional and unintentional injuries occur on a second by second basis in the U.S. We’ll explore which ones result in tragedy most often.
Accidents vs. Intended Acts
My bad! Who hasn’t said that before when accidentally causing a problem? That’s just the thing; sometimes we harm ourselves or others unintentionally and other times it’s very much premeditated. This determination is, many times, the choice that juries have to decide upon, premeditation or lack thereof, in murder trials.Our lesson won’t force you to make such a tough decision, but nonetheless, will confront some hard facts and statistics about unintentional versus intentional injuries and examples of each.
This, all thanks to many 2010 stats from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Unintentional injuries are harmful acts that occurred without any intention of causing damage to oneself or others. A large proportion of unintentional injuries occur in or around the home and many of these injuries occur as a result of falls, like down the stairs or when someone uses a ladder to fix something. Other than the home, we all know bad things can happen in the dangerous outer world, and the most common places of unintentional injuries outside the home are streets, highways, and recreational areas.
Now, you’d think that accidents resulting in injuries are not all that bad. Yeah, you may fall and break a leg, but you’ll survive. Well, not really. It turns out that unintentional injuries cause about two-thirds of all injury deaths in the U.S. every single year! If you’re surprised, here are some examples of why this is the case.
Motor vehicle crashes, unintentional poisonings, suffocation, drowning, accidental firearm discharges, and burns are just some of the dangers many of us face on a day-to-day basis.For people aged 65 or older, unintentional falls are the number one cause of unintentional injury death. These falls, whether they end in death or not, end up costing the U.S. tens of billions of dollars in lost work potential and medical care costs for people aged 65 or older, alone.Those in the age group of 25-64 should be wary of unintentional poisonings with substances at home like chemicals, drugs, and so on. Children and young adults aged 5-24 who die as a result of an unintentional injury mainly do so because of problems sustained from motor vehicle related accidents.
And children below the age of five are most at risk for unintentional death via suffocation and drowning, hence the need to watch the kiddies near the tub and pool.
In contrast to unintentional injuries are intentional injuries, which are injuries resulting from purposeful harmful actions upon oneself or others. The difference between the two is clear from the definitions but you’ll also find out how different the manners of death are with respect to these categories.About one-third of all injury related deaths in the U.
S. are actually caused by violence. Violence is a term that describes the exercise of force to harm oneself or another person. It’s similarly a very unfortunate fact that the majority of these intentional injury deaths occur not by the hands of others, but when a person commits suicide.
The three major contributing factors to suicide deaths are firearms, suffocation, and poisoning, in that order.The second most common cause of violent injuries resulting in death is homicide, not surprisingly mainly through the use of firearms.To put all of that into more detail for you with respect to intentional injury deaths, people aged 35 and older are most likely to die from suicide, mainly through the use of firearms. Those aged 15-34 are more likely to be victims of homicide by use of a firearm.
Children ages 10-14 are likely to die by way of suicide via suffocation. And children under 10 are almost always victims of homicide with respect to intentional injuries.Every year, violent deaths cost the U.S.
$50 billion in medical and work loss related costs.
Let’s recall that unintentional injuries are harmful acts that occurred without any intention of causing damage to oneself or others, while intentional injuries are injuries resulting from purposeful harmful actions upon oneself or others.Falls are a very common cause of unintentional injuries and are the most common cause for such injuries in people aged 65 or over. But peopled aged 25-64 are more likely to suffer from unintentional poisonings, while those between the ages of 5-24 are at higher risk of death from motor vehicle related accidents. Children under the age of five must be closely watched to ensure they do not suffer from suffocation and drowning.
On the flip side here, approximately one-third of injury deaths in America are caused by violence. Violence is a term that describes the exercise of force to harm oneself or another person. The majority of these deaths are actually as a result of suicide, especially if a person is 35 and over.
Those between 15-34 years of age are more likely to be victims of homicide than suicide. But in either of the two latter cases, firearms are used more often than not to cause harm. Children aged 10-14 are more likely to commit suicide by way of suffocation, and children under 10 who die from violence are almost always victims of homicide.
Once you have finished reviewing this lesson, you should be able to:
- Discuss the top accidental injuries that result in death per age demographic in the US
- Differentiate between intentional and unintentional injuries
- Define violence
- Name the top violence-caused deaths for each age demographic in the US