Tips for Preventing Injuries at Home
It may be true that home is where the heart is, but statistics show that it can be a hazardous place for the rest of your body. From the kitchen to the bathroom, it’s important to take steps to prevent accidents and injuries in your house. Unintentional injuries caused the deaths of more than 146,000 people in 2015, according to the National Safety Council’s Injury Facts 2017. The report noted the top cause of unintentional injury-related deaths was poisoning from prescription drug overdoses, chemicals, gases and other substances.
You can help prevent unintentional poisoning in your home by keeping your medications secure, only taking the proper dosage of medications ordered by your health care provider, and installing carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. The Injury Facts report lists falling as the third leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths for all age groups, though it ranks as the top cause for Americans age 65 and older. AARP offers tips for reducing your risk, which include fixing potential trouble spots by keeping walkways, hallways and stairs well lit and free of clutter or throw rugs, using well-fitting footwear with a non-slip sole and having your vision checked by a health care professional at least once every year. Also, you can prevent slips and falls in the bathroom by installing grab bars.
Your kitchen is another source of injuries including cooking-related burns and accidental cuts from knives. AARP notes that you can reduce your risk by using sharp knives, which are safer because you exert less force in chopping and slicing than when you use dull knives that can slip, and by storing your knives in a knife block rather than in an unorganized drawer.
If you do injure yourself at home and it’s a serious medical emergency, call 911. For non-life-threatening injuries, download our free HealthNav app can recommend an appropriate location for treatment, including the nearest BayCare Urgent Care Center.