Christmas is the most magical time of the year, a time of festivities and celebration but it can also be a dangerous time. According to the NHS more than 80,000 people go to A&E each year for Christmas-related accidents and it is not difficult to understand why. More cooking, guests, drinking, electronics, bad weather and more can all contributed to this increased likelihood of accident and injuries. Here we will be addressing some of the most common injuries sustained over the Christmas period to help keep you and your family safe.
Slips and Trips
According to a survey by DrinkAware, over 600 million units of alcohol are consumed by the British public during December. We all know that alcohol hinders our cognitive ability, reducing our risk awareness and inhibitions which can quickly lead to injuries such as slips and trips. Whether you are out in public or drinking at home, it is important to track how much alcohol you are consuming and put plans in place to ensure the safety of yourself and others.
We all love to decorate our homes with Christmas trees, ornaments, fairy lights and more but these festive delights can often cause injuries. Injuries can be caused when retrieving decorations from lofts or when standing on stools or ladders whilst putting decorations up with 1 in 50 people falling from their lofts when getting decorations down. They may look great but they can cause you to fall when being placed high up on a tree, they can be tripped on and glass baubles can be even more hazardous. Ensuring you are using safe and secure ladders with another person to support and guide you is key to avoiding such injuries.
According to the national accident helpline, 1 in 5 people cut themselves when cutting up their Christmas dinner vegetables. But, the Christmas cutting hazards don’t end there as many more people will accidentally cut themselves to different severities when attempting to open their presents or packaging. As such, it is always advisable to not only ensure you are using the correct tools for opening presents but children in particular as supervised when doing so.
Burns and scalds
Burns and scalds are some of the most common injuries the NHS has to deal with each year and Christmas is no exception. With more friends and family around your home during the festive period the likelihood of burns and scalds occurring increases dramatically. Spilt cups of boiling tea, piping hot gravy, scolding pots and pans and roaring fires are just some potential hazards at Christmas that can cause these injuries. It is therefore important to be mindful of where these hot objects are placed and particularly if there are children in your home.
Electric shocks are increasingly common at Christmas as people begin to adorn the inside and outside of their homes with as many lights as possible. Many people are often electrocuted by faulty electrics or by a mix of water and electricity after watering their real fir tree with the lights still plugged in and switched on. It is important to always check that your electrical appliances, particularly Christmas lights are safe to use before hanging them up and to turn them off when you are not at home.
Over Christmas the number of choking hazards increases dramatically with toys, food, batteries, baubles and more all within reach of children. It isn’t just children at risk of choking however, adults are equally prone to choking during the Christmas period. Adults usually choke when swallowing food without chewing properly or when laughing whilst eating or drinking. It may be tempting to pile your plate and eat as fast as possible with so much great Christmas food on offer but it is important to ensure you are being safe when eating. If someone is reading a bad joke from their Christmas cracker, make sure you’ve swallowed your food first! Out of the 80,000 people that visit A&E over Christmas, 6000 are required to be admitted due to the seriousness of their injury. By staying cautious over the festive period you can have fun whilst keeping yourself and your loved ones safe from harm.