SAFETY STARTS WITH YOU!
Preventing Accidental Injuries at Work and School
At Altus Emergency Centers we’re the biggest fans of health and safey. Today we’d like to show you a few easy pointers on preventing accidental injuries.
When it comes to improving safety measures in our daily lives, we can safely say, it’s a team effort. Every one of us can make small changes to our routines that will help make our workplace, schools, and communities safer.
We will start by looking at the most common preventable injuries, some tips to avoid them and what steps to take if they do happen.
Preventable Injuries at Work
Repetitive Motion Injuries
Let’s begin preventing accidental injuries at work by learning about and how to avoid repetitive motion injuries. Constantly making the same movements at our workplace, can create wear and tear on our muscles, tendons, and joints. Repetitive motion injuries don’t always require strenuous activity to develop; work activities such as typing and using the computer can slowly cause damage to our eyesight, increase the risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome, and chronic back pain.
The pain you experience is due to damage to the muscles, tendons, and nerves, and can become irreversible if it continues for too long.
How to Prevent Repetitive Motion Injuries
- – If your job requires heavy lifting, follow proper lifting techniques such as:
- – Lift heavy objects slowly and avoid jerky movements
- – Face the item, do not twist your body when lifting
- – Keep the object close to your body, your feet apart and lift with your legs, not your back
- – Ask for help lifting items that might be too heavy to lift on your own
- – Use ergonomic tools, like fatigue mats if you must stand for long periods, or adjustable chairs if you work at a desk.
- – If you have a desk job make sure your workstation is adjusted to your needs, consider things like:
- – Setting your chair where your back is straight and relaxed
- – The top of your monitor should be at eye level to avoid having to bend your neck
- – When typing your elbows should be at your sides, feet comfortably flat on the floor, and keep your wrists straight
Slips, Falls, and “Walking Into” injuries
When we think of preventing accidental injuries the first thing that comes to mind is the typical slip and fall. Falls are one of the top ER issues for older patients, they can happen to anyone at any age. Not paying attention where we are walking, as well as misplaced office furniture or equipment can cause a person to slip, fall, or walk into a static object resulting in head, knee, foot, back, or neck injuries, depending on the speed and height at which the fall occurs the wounds could be severe.
How to Prevent Slips, Falls and Walking into Injuries
- – Maintain a neat and tidy workplace
- – Mark potential hazards/obstacles like glass doors, windows, and stairs so people can easily see them
- – Place non-slip rugs in potentially slippery areas like entrances
- – Use appropriate signs to indicate wet surfaces
- – Cover and label uneven floor surfaces as well as cords on the floor
Preventable Injuries at School
Schools are supposed to be these safe havens where we send our kids to learn all about all the wonders of this world; but, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 9.2 million kids visit an emergency room every year for non-fatal unintentional injuries, and many of these occur in schools. We hope that by focusing on preventing accidental injuries at school, we’ll have safer, happier kids.
The most common school injuries include:
While most of us can remember an instance where we suffered a minor injury on the playground when we were children, the reality is kids can be seriously injured while playing. Falling from monkey bars and swings, or tripping over equipment sends some 200,000 kids to an emergency room every year.
Preventing Playground Injuries
- – Demand that school playgrounds have soft materials covering the ground such as mulch, sand, or wood chips, this will help lessen the severity of the falls
- – Kids need to be supervised by adults while on the playground, to ensure they only use equipment that is right for their age
- – Playground equipment needs to regular maintenance, and guardrails installed to prevent falls
- – Obstacles like tree stumps and roots should be cleared to avoid children tripping over them
Slipping, Tripping and Falling Injuries
- – Aside from the embarrassment and bruised egos of kids, falling on stairs or wet surfaces can cause severe injuries like broken arms or legs, and concussions.
Preventing Slipping, Tripping & Falling Injuries
- – Teach your kids never to run while going down the stairs
- – Wet surfaces should be clearly labeled
- – Place non-slip mats at all entrances and exits in the school
Sports programs at school are essential for the development of kids. Sports help kids learn how to play as part of a team, embrace challenges, and push themselves to do more and better, but, safety must also be an integral part of every sports program.
Preventing Sports Injuries at School
- – Kids should have access to proper fitting sports gear, helmets, shoulder pads, shin guards, and footwear
- – Coaches need to teach proper techniques, and correct postures when necessary
- – Keep kids hydrated
- – Take breaks; even young bodies need to rest
What to do in the Event of an Unintentional Injury
We lead busy lives where we are often distracted by our phones or computers, and sometimes we are so used to our routines that we stop paying attention to our surroundings, this inevitably leads to unintentional injuries.
Depending on the severity of the injury immediate medical attention may be required, here is when you should come into the nearest Altus Emergency Center for treatment:
- – If you sustained a head injury where you lost consciousness, or are feeling disoriented, tired, have nausea or trouble speaking
- – Deep cuts where the bleeding does not stop
- – Severe pain
- – Severe swelling in the injured area
- – You suspect you may have broken a bone
Altus Emergency Centers cares about preventing accidental injuries. However, should you or a loved one ever experience an injury, we are the best place have the latest diagnostic technologies and the most qualified emergency doctors and nurses to treat you and your loved ones; remember we are open 24/7 every day of the year.
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