Winter months are busy in the nation’s emergency departments. The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has several tips to ensure that you can spend this holiday and colder weather months with friends and loved ones rather than managing a medical emergency.
“Cold weather months put many people at greater risk of avoidable injuries,” said William Jaquis, MD, FACEP, president of ACEP. “Hopefully this holiday season brings you comfort and joy, not a trip to the emergency department. But, if you need to see an emergency physician, we are working through the holidays and every day to be there for you.”
Cold weather combined with physical exertion can be a bad combination for falls or injuries, or heart conditions. Know your boundaries, especially if you have had previous injuries. Dress for the weather and stay hydrated as the chillier temperatures sets in. Avoid over-exertion, particularly if you do physical labor outside.
Inside, keep candles away from curtains or other fire hazards. Avoid putting small lights or decorations in arms-reach of small children or pets.
Emergency physicians encourage everyone to enjoy the holidays, within reason. “This is a special time of year, please celebrate responsibly,” said Dr. Jaquis. “And, consider taking steps to improve one of your most important gifts – our health. Practice self-care, get plenty of rest, exercise and try to stay as stress-free as possible.”
More information can be found at www.emergencyphysicians.org.
The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) is the national medical society representing emergency medicine. Through continuing education, research, public education and advocacy, ACEP advances emergency care on behalf of its 40,000 emergency physician members, and the more than 150 million Americans they treat on an annual basis. For more information, visit www.acep.org.