The holidays are finally upon us! This means a lot more gatherings with friends and family. To ensure you and your kids have a pleasant – and safe – holiday season, check out these tips when visiting over the holidays, from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
- Clean up immediately after a holiday party. A toddler could choke on leftover food or come in contact with alcohol or tobacco.
- In homes with small children, take special care to avoid decorations that are sharp or breakable. Keep trimmings with small removable parts out of the reach of children to prevent them from swallowing or inhaling small pieces.
- Remember that the homes you visit may not be childproofed. Keep an eye out for danger spots like unlocked cabinets, unattended purses, accessible cleaning or laundry products, stairways, or hot radiators.
- Keep a list with all of the important phone numbers you or a baby-sitter are likely to need in case of an emergency. Include the police and fire department, your pediatrician and the national Poison Help Line, 1-800-222-1222. Laminating the list will prevent it from being torn or damaged by accidental spills.
- Traveling, visiting family members, getting presents, shopping, etc., can all increase your child’s stress levels. Trying to stick to your child’s usual routines, including sleep schedules and timing of naps, can help you and your child enjoy the holidays and reduce stress.
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As the school year comes to an end, many kids will be taking on summer chores, including the ever so popular chore – mowing the lawn.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), three national medical organizations are warning families that the routine task of lawn mowing can be extremely dangerous to children, the operator, and those nearby if proper safety precautions aren’t taken.
Alarmingly, 253,000 people were treated for lawn mower-related injuries in 2010 — nearly 17,000 of them children under age 19, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports.
To keep your kids and family safe, please read the following lawn mower injury prevention tips by the AAP:
- Children should be at least 12 years of age before operating a push lawn mower, and age 16 to operate a driving lawn mower.
- Only use a mower with a control that stops the mower blade from moving if the handle is let go.
- Make sure that sturdy shoes (not sandals or sneakers) are worn while mowing.
- Prevent injuries from flying objects (such as stones or toys) by picking up objects from the lawn before mowing begins.
- Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you mow in reverse.
- Always turn off the mower and wait for the blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, inspecting or repairing lawn mower equipment or crossing gravel paths, roads, or other areas.
- Use a stick or broom handle (not your hands or feet) to remove debris in lawn mowers.
- Keep lawn mowers in good working order.
Check out more safety tips.
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