It’s natural to want to make your home festive for the holiday season, but you need to be careful while decorating. The holiday season is one of the most dangerous times of the year due to weather conditions and the weight of boxes and trees being moved around and lifted. Stay safe this holiday season by following these tips while you decorate your home.

Avoid Fires While Hanging Lights

Adding lights to your tree, porch, and shrubbery add a cheery glow to your home, but this can lead to damage if used improperly. When you are getting ready to hang lights, make sure you have purchased lights that have been tested safely. This will be marked on the packaging. If you purchase new lights, consider making the switch to LEDs. These will burn cooler than other types of lights, making them less likely to overheat. If you are using older lights, check for damage and broken bulbs before hanging them. Thinking about making the switch to an artificial tree? Make sure the box contains a fire-resistant label. If a flame sparks and a fire breaks out, the room can be engulfed quickly and overtake the rest of the home.

Prevent Slipping on Ice

Nighttime temperatures can dip well below freezing points throughout the month, leaving any moisture likely to freeze. Black ice can lead to slips and car accidents. Before a cold night, make sure you lay down a layer of rock salt, sand and kitty litter in order to melt the ice and add traction to keep you steady.

Take Care While Unwrapping Your Gifts

The second most common type of holiday accident occurs while unwrapping gifts. Avoid using sharp tools to unwrap gifts such as scissors, knives, and pens, and always make sure to cut away from you to avoid lacerations and cuts. Nothing can ruin a holiday like an impromptu trip to the emergency room.

Lift Heavy Objects with Caution

Between the tree, shoveling snow and moving boxes of decorations out of storage, you’ll be doing a lot of heavy lifting in the next few weeks. When lifting, make sure you stand with your feet shoulder-width apart for maximum support, only bending your hips and knees. Keep your back straight and hold the object close to you, below your shoulders. This will prevent back issues including muscle strain.

If you have suffered an injury while decorating your home for the holidays, don’t wait to get it checked out! Come to your local AFC Urgent Care Center to have your injury examined and treated.