Emergency Nurses Offer Holiday Safety Tips

Posted: Wednesday, December 08, 2004

(NAPSA)-The holiday season can be filled with many pleasurable activities, although the hectic pace can sometimes be stressful. Holiday stress can result in people drinking too much, overeating, not getting enough sleep and generally failing to take care of their health. The Emergency Nurses Association's Injury Prevention Institute/Emergency Nurses CARE, recommends these tips to help you have a safe and healthy holiday season.

Drink responsibly and safely. Monitor your alcohol consumption. Reduce the number, size and frequency of alcoholic beverages you drink or serve at holiday occasions. When attending events where alcohol is being served, always have a designated driver (someone who has agreed not to drink alcohol and can provide transportation for people who are drinking). Avoid mixing alcohol with other drugs or traditional or over the counter medications. Do not skip any dose of your medication without first consulting your physician.

Drive safely. Avoid traveling after midnight, especially on Fridays and Saturdays, since this is the time that most motor vehicle crashes occur. Drive defensively. Always wear your safety belt and make sure that all adult and child passengers are properly restrained. Do not ride with anyone who has been drinking and NEVER get behind the wheel of a moving vehicle (including recreational vehicles such as snowmobiles) after having consumed any alcohol.

Maintain healthy sleeping habits. Keep to your normal sleep schedule. Avoid driving when fatigued as your reactions are slowed and judgment is impaired.

Eat smart. Watch your nutrition and try not to skip meals or replace them with excess snacking.

Avoid S.A.D. If you sometimes get the holiday or winter blues, outdoor exposure to sunlight (or indoors to full spectrum artificial light) for at least a half hour per day (without sunglasses) can ameliorate the symptoms of S.A.D. If the holiday blues get to you, write about it, talk to your favorite good listener or seek the professional help of a psychotherapist.

Deck the halls-safely! Prevent holiday fires by using only nonflammable decorations, inspecting holiday lights and using only those that are UAL-approved. Keeping holiday trees well watered and away from heat sources will prevent them from drying out and becoming a fire hazard.

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