3/7/11

10 Simple Ways To Protect Yourself At Home

It was reported recently that in North West Arkansas there was a child killed on the playground by a soccer goal post that was in bad need of repair. Knowing this is not our subject I felt it was a great place to start on the importance of safety in our home as well as around our home.

I called a “junk” man who deals in broken things, to come to my home and pick up an old swing set that has long lay dormant and in dire need of going into the never never land of broken swing sets – hopefully never to be resurrected again. So for #1 – remove things from the house or yard that are broken and can become a hazard. Keeping the swing set for sentimental reasons doesn’t make any sense to me – as my grandchildren and of course children will not be using it as they are past that stage.

Even in the house I could probably find a broken stool whose leg needs to be replaced but when? I’m writing this at a point when I am able to look around my house and survey. Getting ready to de-clutter from a long winter and recovery from surgery, it is all beginning to overwhelm me and I am ready to clean house! So #2 would be to remove anything in need of repair inside your home. Either repair it, or dump it. Easy as that.

Another hazard inside the home is clutter. Whatever room you place clutter, like old newspapers or magazines, or old bills, they can be a perfect rodent habitat and should be gone through and discarded. #3 we should never give pests a place to live in our home. For sanitary reasons if for no other, plus it gives the cluttered area a place to breath in fresh air, thus eliminating any stale odor the news print or magazine ink may have left.

#4, does the stairs on the outside of your home have hand rails? Why not? To protect yourself, and even visitors from an accidental fall, it is an important that a few dollars are spent to get the rail that accents your home, and have someone put it in place for you. Speaking from a Senior Citizen point of view, this is one of the most important steps one can take for safety in the home.

#5, throw rugs are often what they claim to be; a throw rug that can easily cause you a serious fall. I love small area rugs placed at the front door for foot dust or dirt one may bring in. I also love area (or throw) rugs on the threshold between two hardwood floor rooms. However these tend to be the ones to remove for safety. You be the judge.

#6, loving hot water for the dishwasher, I’ve never thought of a safe temperature to keep the hot water heater. The home safety council suggests keeping the hot water at 120 degrees F. to prevent burns.

#7, it is easy enough to mistake prescription bottles. What could make for a trip to the emergency room, can easily be prevented by taking care to read the bottle correctly, as well as placing medicines high above a child’s reach. It was not easy to admit I might need help, until a few years ago when I started filling a week’s worth of daily reminders. Any drug store handles these plastic containers and it is a small cost to help prevent taking the wrong meds twice.

#8, Many accidents, though not always serious ones can happen in the bathroom. A bathroom for the children or adults, need a non-skid (slip) mat in the bottom of the tub to prevent accidental falls. Then to go a bit further, a handle, like one that can be mounted or suctioned on is a must around the tub; something to grab hold onto while wet and leaving the tub.

#9, thinking of foods in the refrigerator that may be outdated is not on the top of my priority list of safety tips. However, it is important to occasionally go through the freezer, pantry and yes the refrigerator to check for outdated bottles of catsup or salad dressings etc. And even left over food that was intended to be eaten and never was.

#10, maybe just have been listed at the top. However wherever it is on the list of must haves for safety in our home is the burglar Alarm. Most Alarm companies will install one free just for paying a monthly fee to have it monitored. My home was burglarized before we moved into the state where we now live, and the only alarm we had was out little frightened dog that escaped somehow and warned us not to go into the house. We believe that as we entered the back of the house, the burglars were going out the front. No we did not have an Alarm that would have alerted the police or the neighbors for that matter. Maybe you feel secure in your little neighborhood, we did as well. However, take it from me. It pays to have one for those times when you are on vacation, visiting grandma for a few days, or going to be gone overnight. The feeling of security is great.

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