The busy rush of the winter holidays can be exhilarating, but it can also increase the risk of injuries and illnesses. In order to promote the health and safety of your family, take the following precautions during your holiday preparations:
Check Lights for Damage
Although houses and trees can look magical when bedecked in lights, these long strings of wires can pose a fire hazard if they are not properly maintained and set up. Examine each strand for fraying, and discard any sets of lights that have loose connections or lack fuses.
Be Cautious When Climbing Ladders
Putting up lights can be a risky process, so minimize the dangers by using a ladder and following all safety instructions. Avoid reaching out to the side of the ladder or standing above the highest recommended rung. If possible, hire a professional to hang your exterior lights.
Position Candles Securely
When using chanukiahs and other types of candles, make sure they are firmly situated and that curtains, plants, and decorations are well away from the flames. Remember to remain in the room as long as candles are burning, so that any mishaps can be quickly corrected.
Use Holiday Plants Carefully
Certain popular holiday plants can be poisonous, and should be kept well out of the reach of children and pets. These include holly, mistletoe, Jerusalem Cherry, and bittersweet. If you do keep these plants in your house, watch for dropped leaves and berries that could be picked up and swallowed by a curious toddler or animal.
Practice Shopping Cart Safety
When shopping with small children, ensure that they are seated securely in a stroller or the cart’s seat, and discourage leaning over the edge, as it can cause an infant or toddler to lose his or her balance and fall.
If, despite your cautiousness, an injury does occur, visit Good Samaritan Hospital’s emergency department for quality care. With the help of our iTriage app, you can research symptoms, view emergency room wait times, and check in before you arrive! Call (408) 559-2011 for more holiday safety tips.