‘Tis the season for tree-trimming, meal prepping, and holiday gatherings. Make sure you and your family stay safe and healthy this holiday season with these helpful tips.
Wash Your Hands Frequently
Unfortunately, it is also the prime time of year for coming down with a cold or the flu. One of the best ways to prevent this is to wash your hands frequently throughout the day with warm water and soap, especially before eating.
Handle Food Safely
If you’re preparing a big holiday meal, or even when baking Christmas cookies, make sure you’re handling food safely. First, wash your hands and all surfaces that the food could come into contact with. Then, if you’re preparing raw meat, seafood, or eggs, make sure you don’t cross-contaminate other foods by using the same utensils or surfaces to prepare them. You also want to make sure that you cook meat long enough to reach a safe minimum temperature.
According to the USDA, a whole turkey is safe to eat when the internal temperature is 165°.
Practice Good Fire Safety Habits
The majority of residential fires happen during the cold winter months, so make sure you’re always practicing good fire safety habits when lighting candles or your fireplace. A few fire safety tips to keep in mind are:
- Never leave burning candles unattended.
- Make sure electrical cords are safe for use outdoors if using them outside.
- Always monitor stove burners while cooking.
- Have a working fire extinguisher handy, just in case.
Prevent Falls and Other Injuries
Falls and injuries tend to spike during the holiday season, partly because more people are climbing up on ladders to hang Christmas lights, carrying heavy boxes and gifts, and indulging in alcohol this time of year.
Take steps to prevent falls and other injuries by using the same caution you would use any other time of the year when doing these activities. For example, don’t try to stretch too far when hanging up Christmas lights. Climb down, move your ladder over, and head back up. If you’re lifting a heavy object, remember to always lift with your knees, not your back.