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Pediatricians Offer Tips to Avoid Holiday Hazards
Date:12/18/2011

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  • Clean up immediately after a holiday party so that children do not face potentially dangerous situations in the morning, such as leftover spoiled food or alcoholic beverages.
  • Remember that not all homes you visit will be child-proofed, so be aware of potential dangers, such as unlocked medicine or cleaning supply cabinets.
  • Keep a laminated list of important phone numbers, such as the police, fire department and pediatrician, that can be accessed in the event of an emergency. The Poison Help Line is 1-800-222-1222.
  • Traveling and holiday festivities can be stressful for children. Try to maintain children's sleep, nap and eating schedules to help them feel more comfortable.

Fireplaces

  • Remove all greens and other decorations from fireplace area and be sure the flue is open before building a fire.
  • Keep "fire salts," which produce colored flames, away from children. They contain heavy metals that can cause intense stomach and intestinal irritation and vomiting if swallowed.
  • Do not burn wrapping paper in the fireplace.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides additional holiday health and safety tips .

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: American Academy of Pediatrics, news release, Nov. 29, 2011


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