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Tips for Avoiding the Emergency Room This Thanksgiving

11/25/2015

The emergency room is the last place you want to land over the holidays, but the holidays themselves seem to bring about a unique set of circumstances that can land even the most mindful celebrator in the ER. Here are a few tips to avoid some common yet rarely talked about holiday injuries.

1. Deep fried turkey is delicious, but if it is wet or still slightly frozen when it hits the frying oil, danger is near. The bird will certainly spit dangerous hot oil, and may even catch fire or explode. Don’t let this happen in your home, make sure your turkey is fully thawed and patted dry before lowering it in to the frying pot. Even then, take a final inspection. A seemingly defrosted turkey may harbor ice in its cavity, especially between the rib bones. 

2. Carving under the influence not only poses danger to the presentation of the turkey slices, it does not bode well for the elected carver and those around him. Finger and thumb lacerations can be common when turkey-carving and alcoholic beverages are combined.

3. To follow tip #2, let’s just agree that cognitive skills and personal judgement are helpful in accomplishing most holiday tasks; cooking, decorating, cleaning, etc. Add too much alcohol to the mix and one can land in the ER performing the most ordinary of activities, such as climbing a ladder to decorate and other slips, trips and falls. Not to go unmentioned is drinking and driving. According to the National Highway Traffic  Safety Administration, over 40% of holiday traffic deaths are from alcohol-involved crashes.

4. Haven’t played much football or wrestled this year? Perhaps Thursday evening, post-Thanksgiving feast is not the best time to start. While our ER staff are eager to help anyone who walks through our doors, an overzealous game of tackle football could leave you spending the afternoon with us rather than at home with friends and family. Common post-feast injuries seen in the ER include sprained ankles and hands, fractures, knee injuries and displaced shoulders.

Of course, if you need to seek medical attention, make sure you have your insurance cards handy and make sure you know where to go. Is it life-threatening? The Emergency Room is in order. The CVMC Emergency Department is located at 1107 Highway 395 in Gardnerville. Is it a sprain, a non-life-threatening burn, or other urgent but not life-threatening illness or injury? The CVMC Urgent Care at 897 Ironwood Drive might be your best bet.  View our Urgent Care Thanksgiving weekend hours here.



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