STAY HEALTHY. STAY OUT OF THE ER.


We love interacting with the people of the Laredo community, but we’d much rather do it outside the ER than inside it. Keep up with the latest knowledge from our professionals to help keep yourself in the peak of health.




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13/Dec/2018

As much joy as the holidays can bring for many of us, the season also brings with it more than its fair share of safety risks. With fireplaces aglow, candles burning, and string lights sparkling on giant piles of tinder, it’s a time for caution as well as merrymaking. Throw in a houseful of festive kids and pets, and your holiday joy could quickly turn into a trip to Laredo Emergency Room for your little ones, or a trip to the emergency vet for your furry companions.

We really don’t want you spending your holidays seeking emergency medical care for the ones you love most, so we’re sharing these holiday safety tips that will help you keep your kids and your pets safe all season long.

  • Watch the cords. Whether you string lights only on a simple tree in the corner or deck out your entire house in LEDs, the electrical cords from string lights can pose a major safety risk, especially for children and pets. Cords that snake out along the floor pose a tripping hazard that can result in falls and injuries to children, and can serve as a chewing temptation for pets. Very young children may even play among the strings and become strangled. So be sure to tuck away all cords and, when you can’t avoid running cords along walls, use cord covers designed to keep cords in place and protected.

 

  • Choose battery-operated candles. Kids are fascinated by fire and often can’t resist the temptation to experiment with lit candles, even if only to blow and watch the flames dance. The problem is that those dancing flames can catch nearby flammable materials, resulting in a potentially catastrophic fire. Pets are often fearful of flames, which may cause them to panic and accidentally overturn a lit candle. The National Fire Protection Association says that the top three days for home candle fires are Christmas, New Year’s Day, and New Year’s Eve. Luckily, battery-operated candle choices abound, with many realistic-looking options available to help you avoid adding to those numbers.

 

  • Screen the spread. The holidays bring with them many opportunities to indulge in once-a-year treats. Those delicious additions don’t just add calories to our diet – they also pose risks to our children and pets. Overeating can cause nausea and abdominal pain for all of us, but children oftentimes are even more sensitive to ingredients that are new to them and may have more significant reactions. Children also love to grab handfuls of the treats that pop up during the holidays – but because “bite-sized” treats are not one size fits all, children are more likely to choke on these goodies. Be sure to check all treats for size before you serve to your children. Pets are highly sensitive to the delicious smells of holiday foods and often can’t resist sneaking a serving for themselves – so beware of leaving out chocolate and any other foods that may be harmful to your pets.

 

  • Travel safely. The winter holiday season is one of extensive travel for many families with kids and pets, whether on the road or by air. Making your holiday trip safe for the kids and pets in your family is easy with just a few guidelines. First, always buckle up your children, even for long car rides, whether in a baby seat, booster, or the car’s seat belt. Pets can comfortably ride crated if you have the space, or you can fit them with their own seatbelt or car seat. Make sure to never let your pet out of the vehicle without a leash. If flying, don’t have your child sit on the aisle, where passengers are most likely to become injured by passing carts or other passengers.

 

These holiday safety tips are sure to help make your season more enjoyable for you and your family.

But if you should find yourself facing a medical emergency this holiday season, Laredo Emergency Room is here to help 24/7/365.

For more health tips, follow us on Facebook! Laredo Emergency Room is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

 


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13/Dec/2018

Thanksgiving kicks off the most joyous time of year. You’re off of work, spending time with friends and loved ones, enjoying nice weather, and of course, indulging in amazing holiday food! Unfortunately, weight gain over the holidays has become commonplace for many of us, but it doesn’t have to be the norm! If you’ve been worried about how you’re going to avoid the holiday pounds, we have a few ways you can make this Thanksgiving the healthiest on record.

Don’t Come to Dinner Starving

The same rule that applies to grocery shopping applies to Thanksgiving dinner: the hungrier you are, the more you’re going to consume! Have a lighter snack before arriving or bring a snack with you to curb your appetite before dinner. You are less likely to overindulge if you have been able to snack throughout the day.

Create a Colorful Plate

Fruits and vegetables are a great substitute for breads and starches. Swap the mashed potatoes for green beans, and the dinner rolls for carrots! Take advantage of the nutritious foods that are available to you, or suggest making and bringing healthy dishes for everyone to share! A colorful plate means you have mostly avoided the beige-colored calories – biscuits, gravy, stuffing, and mashed potatoes!

Opt for White Meat

Did you know that dark meat turkey with the skin has twice the fat of white meat, and 40% more calories? Choosing white meat selections without the skin in 3.5-ounce portions will save you on a good amount of calories that come on a Thanksgiving dinner plate. Turkey will also keep you feeling fuller longer.

Think “Simple” for Desert

Instead of going straight for the sugar after dinner, pick deserts that include fruit or something fruit-based. Traditional options like fruit salads and pumpkin pie are great alternatives to frosted sugar cookies and sweet pecan pie! 

Practice Mindfulness and Portion Control

These two approaches go hand-in-hand, as being conscious of your portion sizes and mindful of what you’re consuming will lead to healthier decisions when you’re passing through the casserole buffet line. It is easy to become distracted at family holiday gatherings and begin grazing on the first appetizer put in front of you but stay conscious of the items you’re putting on your plate or napkin.

We can’t tell you how to tell your mom that you just can’t eat her sweet potato casserole, but armed with these tips, you will be able to successfully navigate your way to a cleaner Thanksgiving.

 

For more health tips, follow us on Facebook! Laredo Emergency Room is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

 


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13/Dec/2018

Across the nation, sport related injuries are on the rise—and they can contribute to many factors. The physical stress is often too much for the growing bodies of young athletes and wearing the proper safety gear isn’t always enforced. And this just scratches the surface.

Studies have now connected concussions to prolonged participation in football. The condition known as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, or CTE, has led to life-altering physical and mental conditions for many prominent professional athletes. Although sports leagues and schools have sparked nationwide campaigns to help encourage safety in sports at all ages. And though sport related injuries are now on high alert, dangers of suffering injuries are no less alarming. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reported the following:

1.) Football accounted for 1, 0240,022 doctor office, emergency room, and hospital visits

2.) Soccer accounted for 368,726 injuries

3.) Cheerleading caused 75,307 injuries

4.) Gymnastics contributed to 67,542 injuries

This is why parents must get involved to keep young athletes safe, in addition to efforts from programs such as Heads Up Football and our very own, here at Laredo Emergency Room. The following are some simple ways you can help protect your child from injuries:

  • 1.) Heart Screenings – Unfortunately, a life of sports is not meant for everyone, especially those of us with heart conditions. It’s never easy to take away something they love, but sometimes that’s the best way to protect our loved ones.
  • 2.) Stretching and Warming Up – To help prepare their body for exercise, make sure they loosen their joints and increase their blood flow by stretching. Encourage them to gently prepare for physical activity by warming up.
  • 3.) Playing with Kids Their Age – Your child can be as large as an older kid and still not as physically mature. Letting them play with them may be too big of a risk and literal hit to take.
  • 4.) Avoiding Excessive Fatigue – Some schools of thought have suggested fatigue contributes to sports-related injuries. Until the cause and correlation are clear, we should not let our children over-extend themselves.
  • 5.) Buying the Right Shoes – Running routes on wet grass in sneakers is an injury waiting to happen. Investing in the right shoes can help keep them out of our ER and on the playing field!
  • 6.) Staying Hydrated – Losing just 1% of their body’s water content can increase the likelihood of injury.
  • 7.) Avoiding Playing while Injured – When not under profession sports contract, playing injured should be out of the question. Let them heel before they get back on the field.
  • 8.) Watching Their Temperature – Combining sports with temperatures in the upper 90’s too 100’s can equal a heat stroke. In the summer, at its hottest, young athletes face the most significant risk.
  • 9.) Consuming Nutritious Foods – Sports injuries can often be a sign of nutritional imbalances. Help avoid the problem by preparing pre-workout-foods that have a healthy balance of proteins, carbs, and calories.
  • 10.) Joining a Team Sport – Youth sports participation can not only help improve your child’s health and physical fitness, but can also boost their self-esteem, and improve their leadership skills!

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13/Dec/2018

With the back-to-school season upon us, it won’t take long for the bugs to come out. And not the creepy crawly kind, but rather the contagious ones… influenza, the common cold, rotavirus, and many others. With our kids being in such close proximity to each other, and often holed up indoors for most of the school year, the time is ripe for sharing infectious germs. And the contagion doesn’t stop at the school playground. Parents catch viruses from their kids and share them with coworkers, often before we even realize we are sick.

In spite of all of this, there are steps we can take to protect ourselves from illness that goes beyond good hygiene habits like frequent handwashing… and that is boosting our immune systems from the inside out. In addition to getting adequate sleep each night, simple dietary changes can help us fight viral infections. To boost your immune system, go beyond the traditional daily glass of OJ and try to incorporate these delicious options into your diet:

1.) Berries – In addition to being a super brain food, blueberries and other berries can help boost our immune systems because of their high levels of flavonoids, which have antioxidant properties. These antioxidants bolster our respiratory systems’ defense system, helping to protect us against illness.


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