Researchers combed through the data and found that nearly 2,000 kids go to the emergency room each year with injuries from climbing on or falling through the gates.
Most injuries weren't serious. But the researchers say parents should know about precautions. That includes using bolted gates, not pressure-mounted ones, at the top of the stairs.
Most of the injuries were not serious, but the numbers have more than tripled over 20 years.
Researchers say these cases climbed from about 4 per 100,000 children in 1990 to almost 13 per 100,000 in 2010.
The study was published Monday in the journal Academic Pediatrics.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)