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Minimize the Hazards in Your Home

By Paul Rothbart

The world can be a wonderful place but care must be taken to avoid potential hazards. It's nice to be able to stay tucked away safe and sound at home. Your home may also contain hazards, especially if you have small children. Household accidents are not uncommon and most are preventable. But taking the time to locate potential hazards and taking steps to minimize their risk, you can feel safe and secure at home. Here are some things to consider. 

The Risk of Falls

When it comes to accidents in the home, the most common cause of death is a fall. Older adults tend to be at the most risk. Even if the fall isn't fatal, serious injuries often occur. For a senior citizen, a broken bone is much worse than for a younger person as it takes longer to heal. Stairs are a common place to fall. Young children should be kept away from staircases by using safety gates. Steps and handrails should be inspected periodically to make sure they are not damaged and securely installed. Carpeting on steps should be nailed down flush to the surface. Older adults with mobility problems should consider living in a single story house or installing a stairlift.

Fire Hazards

In the U.S., 3,000 people die every year due to fire. An early warning allows the occupants to get out of the home safely in case of fire. Your bedrooms, kitchen, and basement should all be equipped with smoke detectors. The detectors should be tested every month and the batteries changed every six months. Keep a watch on pans containing hot oil and burning candles. Matches and cigarette lighters should be stored out of the reach of young children. Create an escape plan and make sure the whole family is aware of it.

Stoves

Whether gas or electric, stoves are fraught with potential danger, especially for young children. When cooking, use the back-burners as much as possible to keep the pans out of the reach of kids. Always turn the pot handles in. If they overhang, a curious child could reach up and pull down a pot full of hot food or liquid. Make sure you have no gas leaks and have electric stoves checked by a qualified electrician periodically. When cooking, be careful not to leaves knives lying where the little ones can get to them.

Safe at home is a comforting concept but care must be taken to keep it truly safe. A little caution goes a long way. 

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Montgomery, Ala.

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