Decking the Halls? Habersham Medical Center Offers Tips to Prevent Falls
 
The holiday season can bring with it an increased risk of injuries from falls, as people use ladders, stools and other furniture to hang Christmas lights, ornaments and other decorations.  While you are decorating and celebrating the season don’t end up in the emergency room for fall-related injuries sustained while “decking the halls.”

 “Fractures are the most frequent holiday decorating-related injury with most fractures caused by falls from ladders,” says Ben Jordan, director of Habersham Medical Center’s Rehabilitation Services.
 
Habersham Medical Center’s Rehabilitation Services – physical, speech and occupational therapy - offers the following safety tips to prevent falls this holiday season:
  • Recognize the possibility of falls.
  • Use safe ladder practices.
  • Use safer alternatives such as step stools instead of furniture when hanging decorations.
  • Increase your awareness of seasonal fall hazards, like decorations or packages on the floor, steps or walkways.
  • Make sure the ladder is on a secure and level footing before climbing.
  • Space the base of the ladder one foot away from the wall for every four feet it reaches up.
  • Stay centered between the rails of the ladder.  Do not overreach – move the ladder.
  • Do not stand on the ladder’s top two rungs.
  • To reach a roof, extend the ladder at least three feet beyond the edge of the roof.
  • Keep the area around the top and bottom of the ladder clear.
  • Make sure step ladders are securely locked open. Never use a folding step ladder when it is closed.