'Digit-Defender' Aims to Decrease Child Finger Injuries

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RENO, Nev. -- New parents know all about child-proofing a house, from electrical outlets, to sharp table corners, but what about doors? A local businessman created and invention that he hopes will keep your kids' little digits safe.

According to the National Safety Council, there are more than 300,000 door-related finger injuries that lead to hospitalizations each year and 63 percent of them happen to children.

It's something you don't usually think about, but this happens all the time.

"A lot of times you're walking forward to get what you need to get, you're not always paying attention to what's behind you and their fingers are fast," Heather Taylor, Child's Play daycare center said. "They get up to that door and then wham. You're not trying to catch the door because you don't know they're there. It's very very common."

Heather Taylor owns a daycare and takes care of toddlers and infants all day, but after a childhood experience, she wanted to take every precaution.

"I had my brother actually lob the top of his finger off in our door when I was about 12 and it was not fun," she said.

These are "unintentional injuries" and are not considered accidents by the National Safety Council because door-related injuries are to be expected and and be avoided.

Taylor decided to install Digit-Defender, a self-resetting door mount to avoid household doors from slamming on any fingers.

"Once it's installed you don't have to think about it," Pat Callahan, Digit-Defender creator said.

Callahan designed it so when a door opens, the lever drops automatically. To fully close the door, you manually lift the lever.

He says that children ages one to four are affected the most.

"Somebody else is usually closing the door on their fingers--the wind the dog, the larger sibling, the adult--they're just really low and small," he said.

Parents can be doing everything right, but it's easy to miss the one thing that's under their noses. It can happen to anyone.

"We've all had it happen, we have the doors open on a nice spring day and you're doing spring cleaning and kids our playing and then all of a sudden a gust of wind comes and all the doors slam shut... things can happen so fast," Taylor said.

Not only can digit defender protect your children's fingers from getting their fingers getting caught in the door, but also your pets that are going in and out of your room.

Callahan says he is trying to expand his product to grocery stores nationwide. To learn more about Digit-Defender, click on the link below.