Is your home 100% safe from accidents?
According to statistics, more than more than 30,000 Americans die each year from accidental or unintentional injuries at home – and that number increases every year.
That’s 30,000 deaths that are totally preventable and almost always predictable, but nevertheless, home injuries remain prevalent.
Here are some of the most common household accidents ranked from first to last:
- Falls claim almost 6,000 lives every year.
- Accidental poisoning claims 5,000 deaths a year – it’s also the leading cause of accidental deaths at home for young adults and the middle-aged.
- Fires/burns. Home fires and injuries related to fire is the third-leading cause of accidental deaths at home.
- Deaths related to obstruction of the airway such as choking, suffocation, and strangulation is a concern for households with younger children.
- Like suffocation, drowning can pose a threat to young children.
Incidents such as falls, poisoning, and drowning can be avoided by installing grab bars and keeping items with poisonous substances secure and out of reach of children – but the fact is that no matter how many preventive measures you take, you can never be 100% safe.
However, you can drastically cut the risk of it happening by leveraging technology that will keep your household safe and secure in the shelter of your own home.
Let’s take a look at some of the essential devices that will help you accomplish that goal.
1. Fire extinguisher
In an emergency fire situation, evacuation should be the first priority rather than attempting to contain a fire.
However, households should consider a fire extinguisher for accidental fires that commonly break out in the kitchen – it takes literally seconds to reach out and grab a fire extinguisher and put it out, provided you learn how to use it properly.
2. Smoke detector
Smoke alarms are a must in every household, regardless of their variety (hardwired and battery-powered). Hard-wired smoke detectors that are continuously powered are a dependable choice if you don’t spend a lot of time at home, or if your home requires more than one smoke alarm – they can be set to alarm simultaneously in the event of an incident.
Consult your local fire department to find out what smoke detector works best for your household – they will be more than willing to give you the right advice. Or, look at sites like Grounded Power that test many different models.
3. Carbon monoxide detector
While carbon monoxide poisoning is something we all pay for when buying CO2-heavy products, many people still refuse to buy and install a carbon monoxide detector in their homes. Carbon monoxide is produced anytime fuel is burned though, and it’s a gas that you can neither smell nor see. This makes it all the more dangerous, considering the household devices that burn gas, charcoal, or any other fuel.
4. Burglar alarm
A safe home is one that is safe from home invasions. This is why burglar alarms have always been strong deterrents to crime – infiltrators who know that there is one installed will more likely be persuaded to stay away from targeting your home from invasions.
There are plenty of modern security alarm systems that enable you to monitor your home’s security even when you’re not around. Furthermore, there are advanced solutions that combine the features of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and send you push notifications in cases of a fire, flood, or gas leak.
5. First aid kit
No home should be without a proper first aid kit – they are an absolute necessity. It is a good idea to have more than just one first aid kit in the house (as well as your automobile) that is kept in an easy-to-find area in cases of emergencies. You can opt to purchase a readymade first aid kit at your local pharmacy, or you can put one together yourself – as you may already know, you never know what you might need in an emergency situation.
Making a first aid kit is easier than you think; here are some suggestions from the National Health Service as far as what should be inside your first aid kit:
- bandages and plasters in different dimensions
- sterile gauze dressings (small, medium, and large)
- sterile eye dressings
- safety pins
- sterile gloves (disposable)
- tweezers and scissors
- cleansing wipes
- sticky tape
- digital thermometer
- creams for rashes and insect bites
- antiseptic cream
- painkillers (paracetamol, ibuprofen, etc)
- cough medicine
- antihistamines (cream and tablets)
- hydrogen peroxide
Practical tips for staying safe at home
Not all accidents can be avoided just by using alarms and fire prevention devices – here are some practical tips you can use in a pinch.
- Remove excess clutter. Store unused items in storage rooms – they are less likely to pose the risk you might trip over them.
- Ditch that rug.Rugs are likely to induce falls. If you prefer to keep rugs around the house, tape them underneath to avoid slipping on them.
- Secure the bathroom. Use bars and nonslip mats around the bathroom.
Reducing the risk of poisoning
- Keep hazardous materials away from children.
- Label all liquid containers.
- Don’t mix cleaning products together.
- Know who to call in case of a poisoning incident.
Prevent airway obstruction
- Keep an eye on your children. Children are exposed to a high risk of choking of suffocation – keep an eye on them during playtime and store them once they are done.
- Keep choking hazards away and out of reach of children. Strings, cords, ropes, trash bags, and other choking hazards such as small items your children may have access to should be kept.