During June, the Home Safety Council (HSC) is “working to educate and motivate families to take actions that will increase the safety of their homes.” There are five leading causes of injuries in the home; fires and burns, choking and suffocation, falls, drowning and poisoning. Over 20 million people visit the emergency room or doctor as a result of those injuries. Here are a few tips to minimize the risk of injuries at home:
Fires and Burns:
- Install smoke detectors on every level of your home and in every bedroom. Test them once monthly and replace the batteries twice a year (daylight savings time changes).
- Fit all your electrical outlets with safety covers
- Add anti-scalding devices on faucets if you have children
- Have a plan of exit and meeting place for the entire family in case of fire
- For upper level bedrooms, have a fire escape ladder in every room
Choking and Suffocation:
- Adult supervision when young children are eating and playing
- Being watchful of potential choking hazards for small children (including food and toys)
- Take a class on the appropriate use of the Heimlich Maneuver for choking
- Use non-slip bathmats in every bathtub and shower
- Install safety bars in bathtubs and showers
- Use safety gates on stairs when there are children in the home
- Use nightlights to light dark hallways, stairs, etc.
- Keep all medicines and household cleaners up and away from children
- Install a carbon monoxide detector at all levels of the home and near bedrooms
- Post the phone number for the Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222)
- Never leave a child alone in the bathtub or swimming pool
- Never leave buckets and containers filled with water around the house
These are only a few important tips, so please visit homesafetycouncil.org for much more information about keeping your family safe in and around your home. Also, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has a wonderful Home Safety Checklist. Spend this time to make your home a safe place for you and your family.