The 5 Most Common Home Accidents and How You Can Prevent Them
This entry was posted on September 17, 2015.
Home accidents are just an inevitable part of life. Slips, trips, falls, and cuts will happen, and yet many everyday activities, like eating dinner or cleaning, may cause serious injury or create a life-threatening situation.
Here is a list of the five most common accidents that happen at home, including tips on how you can prevent them:
1. Slipping and Falling
Falling is the leading cause of home deaths in the United States and claims more than 6,000 lives each year. Slips and falls are commonly caused from ladders, step stools, shower stalls, bathtubs, and high chairs. Although slipping and falling can happen to anyone at any age, the young and old are most susceptible to injury.
To avoid slipping or falling, clear away clutter like small furniture, pet toys, and electrical cords when not in use. Install grab bars and handles in the shower and bathtub, and install railings on both sides of the stairs. Always supervise young children, especially when in kiddy seats and high chairs, or when getting in and out of the bathtub.
Poisoning is the second leading cause of death for Americans and was the leading cause of death in 2014 for 18 states. Adults are affected by misusing prescription drugs while children typically poison themselves from accidental prescription drug use. According to the National Safety Council, emergency rooms see 165 children per day who have taken medications on their own.
Make sure your medicine cabinets are always locked, hide away all toxic household cleaners, and be sure to take the correct dosage of your prescription and never mix it with alcohol.
Drowning is the number one cause of death in children ages 1-4, and the second leading cause of death for children 5-14. It only takes a couple inches of water for an infant to drown in a bathtub, and only seconds to lose consciousness.
The best way to prevent drownings at your home is never to leave your child’s side when they’re in the bathtub, as well as when they’re playing in a pool. For adults, always swim with a friend and use your best judgment after drinking alcohol.
Suffocation from choking is the fourth leading cause of home deaths every year and is the second main cause of death in children. Taking too big a bite of food, as well as leaving your children with small toys and other household items can cause choking.
Make sure your child’s sleeping area is free from all small objects and from any hanging features or blankets that could strangle them. You may also consider taking a CPR course to learn how to help someone who is choking or revive an unconscious victim.
Burning is the fifth leading cause of home accidents, and house fires claim the lives of hundreds every year. Fires can spark from outdated wiring, and serious burns can occur from leaving your child alone in the kitchen.
Never leave a burning candle or stovetop unattended. Place a mesh gate in front of a fireplace, and make sure there are never any leftover matches lying around. There should be smoke alarms in every room and outside of each bedroom, and be sure to check their batteries at least once a year. You should also create a fire escape plan for your family and set aside a day to practice it with your loved ones.
While you may identify the risk in some of these common accidents occurring more frequently in your home than others, it is important to discuss these situations and take preventative steps to ensure everyday safety for yourself and your loved ones.
- National Safety Council: http://www.nsc.org/learn/safety-knowledge/Pages/safety-at-home-falls.aspx
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov/injury/overview/data.html
4. NSC 2014 News Release: http://www.nsc.org/NewsDocuments/2014-Press-Release-Archive/3-25-2014-Injury-Facts-release.pdf