Keep everyone safe, healthy and happy this holiday season.
With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it’s important to remember the season can come with hidden dangers for you and your children.
Health Partnership Clinic recommends taking a moment to assess your surroundings to identify any potential hazards and prevent them from harming your children.
So, what can you do to keep your kids safe?
Health Partnership offers the following simple steps to keep everyone safe, healthy and happy this holiday season.
Tips for a Safe Holiday
- Keep all alcohol out of the reach of children. Clean up immediately to avoid exposing kids to leftover drinks.
- Do not put potentially harmful gifts (such as perfume/cologne, glass, or any other poison or sharp materials) under the tree where children can get to them.
- Keep mistletoe and holly berries out of the reach of children; they can be toxic if too much is ingested. The American Association of Poison Control Centers says they’re not poisonous, but can cause nausea, diarrhea, tingling or burning of the mouth when eaten.
- Avoid using small decorations that could be swallowed by a child.
- Never leave children in a room with lighted candles. Keep matches, lighters and all flames out of reach of children. Use non-flammable candle holders and avoid glass or breakable containers. Make sure candle holders are out of reach of children and aren’t sitting on a cloth that can be pulled. Consider flameless candles (battery-powered) but makes sure that batteries are secured.
- Turn off all lights when leaving the house.
- Do not use indoor lights outside.
- Check all toys for button batteries—the small disc-shaped batteries often found in small toys, cameras, watches, etc. Make sure children can’t remove the batteries from their toys or reach where they are stored. They pose a swallowing risk and can damage the inside of the throat or stomach.
- Children should not arrange lighting or ornaments without close supervision.
- If you have a live tree, make sure the stand stays filled with water and never use lighted candles on a tree or near other evergreens. Artificial trees should be marked “fire-resistant.”
- All lights should be marked with the UL Seal that certifies that the product has safety tested.
- Be sure to pick up wrappings, ribbons and bows to prevent possible suffocation, choking and fire hazards.
- Use precautions with decorations that can irritate skin, eyes and lungs. Artificial snow can have chemicals that can be harmful when sprayed and inhaled, so follow instructions on the can carefully. Be sure to wear gloves when decorating with spun glass angel hair or other potential irritants to protect your skin.
- Be on the lookout for lead. Strings of lights may be coated in a plastic that contains lead, so be sure to wash your hands after handling lights. Artificial trees made in China or that are older than nine years old may also contain lead or give off dangerous levels of lead dust as they deteriorate. Toss old trees and check labels for new ones about lead content.
Children should always be supervised, but it’s important to be especially vigilant during the holidays. Following these safety tips can help prevent injuries and allow you to enjoy a fun, memorable and safe holiday!