Preventable injuries are biggest health risk

Safety and the role it plays in your life depends on many things, including your attitude.

All of us need to learn how to protect ourselves and family members from the potential injury hazards that can strike at any given time. We all need to be made aware of and reminded to be responsible, to think, and to make time for safety!

The intent of this article on safety is to educate and remind you to instill the safety first, last, and always in your mind. Hopefully, people will start to make safety a priority in their lives.

Parents and grandparents work hard to prepare children for the future. But if you don’t teach children how to avoid preventable injuries, their future may never happen.

Children can learn to be safe. Sparking an interest in safety early on in a child’s life can lead to a life-long appreciation for injury prevention–and how it affects our daily lives.

You owe it to yourself and family to work and play safely. Every time a family member is injured or killed by something that could have been prevented, everyone suffers–children, parents, friends, and entire communities.

Hospitals in Canada have reported an increase in unintentional injuries (injuries that could have been prevented). In a national report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information, the bottom line was that 90 percent of injuries are preventable!

The general public in the past has exhibited a concern toward problems such as violence, drugs, and diseases. But these are not the number-one health risk to Canadians. Rather, the biggest health risk to Canadians is unintentional injuries!

These range from fire and burns injuries; bike, traffic, and pedestrian injuries; drownings and other water injuries; firearm injuries; fall injuries; poisonings; and choking, suffocation, and strangulation injuries. Yet these type of injuries are not random accidents–they are predictable and, with proper education, largely preventable.

Injury prevention programs seem to have no advertisement at all. Rarely do you see a safety tip on television, in the newspaper, or hear one on the radio. The injury problems that plague Canada will continue unless something is done.

Education and promotion is the only effective way.

This column, “Your Safety,” will appear bi-weekly in the Fort Frances Times.

Fact: If you never need what you learn about personal safety, you have lost nothing. But if you never learn what you need, you may lose everything . . . your family and your life!

A friendly reminder to you and your family–make time for safety!