Ah, the holidays. It’s the season that many of us look forward to all year long. And with all the good food, friends, and gifts, it’s no wonder. But along with the extra holiday festivities come extra opportunities to put you and your kids at risk of injury or illness – some of which can send you to the emergency room.
This holiday season, we at Laredo Emergency Room are all for making merry – but we do recommend you navigate the season with care and caution because of holiday risks like these:
- Overeating. What would the holidays be without all your favorite seasonal treats? We get it. But patients come to Laredo Emergency Room frequently for nausea and stomach pain, and the sad truth is that overindulging in those festive foods can turn you into a humbug with indigestion, nausea, and excess gas. Instead of giving yourself permission to go overboard because it’s the holidays, approach the season’s goodies with a dose of moderation. Go ahead and enjoy reasonable portions of all your holiday favorites – and then skip the foods that simply aren’t worth the pain and weight gain.
- Alcohol. Holiday parties also serve up plenty of opportunities to enjoy your favorite alcoholic beverages – and to overindulge in them. While this can result in hangover symptoms like headache and nausea, the consequences of drinking too much also can be deadly. Drinking in excess can put you at risk for alcohol poisoning, a life-threatening condition that requires emergency room treatment. Aside from that risk, drinking too much can be deadly for others if you drink and then choose to drive. If you plan to drink at holiday parties, be sure to set a limit for yourself and have a designated driver help you get home.
- Travel. With holiday travel comes risk associated with getting out on the highways or airways at one of the busiest times of the year. To minimize your risk of a vehicle crash, be sure you are well-rested, using your seat belt, and taking frequent breaks throughout your road trips. If you are flying, reduce your risk of blood clots by standing and walking around in the plane at least once every hour or two. Be sure to use your seat belt however you travel.
- Decorating. If you’re in fierce competition with the neighbors to see who can put up the most holiday lights in your yard, we’re rooting for you. But keep in mind that this kind of decorating comes with serious health hazards. When climbing ladders, make sure you have a helper holding the ladder at its base for stability and don’t try to carry too much up at once. Check all light strings and electrical extension cords for shorts and other signs of damage – and don’t overload your electrical panel’s circuits.
- Cooking, candles, and fire. All season long kitchens across Laredo are warmed by the hustle of cooking and the ovens and stoves that make it all come together. But Laredo Emergency Room sees our fair share of burn victims, so we urge you to use care while cooking for your loved ones. And while candles and fires add a festive glow to the season, they also pose a significant burn hazard. Keep fireplace screens in front of blazes and opt for battery-operated candles.
- Medical office closures. Throughout the holidays, many primary care physicians and even urgent care practices close their doors in observance of the holidays. This means it’s important for you to have a holiday season plan for your emergency care. Know that Laredo Emergency Room is here for you 24/7/365 to treat emergencies throughout the season for you and your family.
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