On a typical day, we go through our routines at work or in doing chores, rummaging through the garage, buying groceries, and taking the commute home from work. We encounter multiple threats in our day-to-day lives, dodging incoming vehicle and pedestrian traffic, falling debris, and practicing safety measures, like wearing safety goggles in a construction site. The outside world is full of dangers that can result to injuries and even death if you’re not careful. But, did you know that dangers exist in your home, as well?
The Rise in Home Injuries
Our homes represent a safety blanket that protects us from the dangers of the outside. However, reports as far back as 2002 have observed that dangers do exist at home, causing millions of injuries, hospital visits, and thousands of deaths every year in the U.S. What causes these injuries and deaths at home?
According to health experts, falls and poisonings are among the top problems among children and adults, with over 36,000 people dying from falls in 2017. With the data available, you should be more mindful of your home conditions and the people you’re living with by replacing your gutters with safer alternatives like leaf gutter protection, removing the need to climb and remove the debris yourself.
Other Causes of Unintentional Injuries at Home
Aside from the threats mentioned above, the following are more potential situations and threats to look out for at home and in the community:
- Vehicle Crashes – Just because you’re driving near home doesn’t mean you’re safe. People are actually more prone to accidents when they feel too relaxed or least expect it. Inexperienced drivers, impaired driving, and distracted driving can be life-threatening, even along your street. Always be alert behind the wheel regardless of where you are and be sure someone competent is behind the wheel.
- Drowning – Excluding boating incidents, an average of 10 people die by drowning each day. Drowning is the fifth-leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths among all age groups. Be wary of children in swimming pools and bathtubs, and don’t forget the importance of swimming lessons. If not, supervise them regularly.
- Fire – As the sixth-leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths, more than 2,600 deaths have been caused by burns and fire-related injuries in 2015. Fires are often triggered at night when people are unaware. Acquiring a smoke alarm is an easy remedy and decreases the chances of death in half.
- Choking- Dinner at the table can be life-threatening if you're not careful, so be warned that choking on your food should be remedied by learning safety measures like the Heimlich maneuver. The most at-risk age groups for choking and suffocation are children, infants, and people above the age of 80.
- Natural Disasters – Even beyond our control, disasters claim hundreds of lives each year. Deaths from natural disasters are relatively few compared to the others in this list, but you should still be prepared for it by learning emergency preparedness and stocking up on supplies.
By being aware of the many dangers inside and outside your home, establishing a safer environment, and implementing emergency measures, you can significantly decrease unintentional injuries that can spell the difference between life and death.