Franklin Park Participates in National Safety Month

Posted on: July 17, 2014

The 2014 National Safety Month theme is “Safety: It Takes All Of Us." This was inspired by the idea of risk reduction. We here at The Health Center at Franklin Park (HCFP), can also make a difference in the lives of our residents and staff in our community. With National Safety Month (NSM), we can raise awareness and prevent injury in our community by using best safety practices on a daily basis.

The HCFP has chosen the following safety measures to focus on this year 2014. Our safety team members and residents have participated and have been educated on the importance of Hydration, Fire, Flames & Smoke, The Sun, and Staying Safe while Staying Active. Everyone can be involved in reducing the risk from injury, if we know how to indentify and prevent injuries from occurring.

The first week of NSM at Franklin Park we educated our staff and resident of the importance of safety by staying hydrated. Hydration is a key factor is our everyday lives to stay healthy and active. Water plays a very important role in our bodies. For instance, the water in our blood helps the red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of our bodies. The stomach and intestines helps digest food, urine helps the body get rid of waste products and sweat helps the body cool.  Water makes up more than half of our body weight. Nearly 60-75% of our bodies consist of water. About 70% of our muscles are made of water. Brain tissue is said to consist of 85% water. So as you can see, it is very important to maintain hydration in order for our bodies to function properly. Hydration is especially important in our population at the HCFP. Results of not staying hydrated can cause injury and/or death. Individuals also can have excess body fat, poor muscle tone, digestive complications, muscle soreness and water retention health problems. Next to air, water is the element most necessary for our survival.

Tips to Avoid Dehydration:
*Have appropriate amounts of fluids 6-10 8oz glasses of water per day. If you have an increase of exercise or in hot temperatures you should increase this to 6-12 8oz of water per day or as necessary.
*Soda, Alcohol and coffee contain water; however these beverages are actually dehydrating fluids. Not only do they eliminate the water contained in them, but cause our bodies to lose further amounts of water from our body reserve.
*Avoid being in the sun for long periods of time.

Signs and Symptoms of Mild to Moderate Dehydration:
*Headaches, Recurring or chronic pain, difficulty passing urine, Dizziness, weakness, sleepiness, cramping in the arms and legs, crying with no tears, dry warm skin, flushed face, irritability, depression, malaise, constipation and water retention.

Signs and Symptoms of Moderate to Severe Dehydration:
*Confusion, irritability, lethargy, poor skim elasticity, decreased consciousness, fainting, lack of urine output, shrunken eyes, moist; cool extremities, severe muscle contractions in arms, legs, stomach and back, rapid and faint pulse, low blood pressure, rapid breathing, convulsions, bloated stomach and heart failure.

STAY SAFE, KEEP DRINKING, AND STAY HYDRATED!!!

 

The second week of NSM at Franklin Park we educated the staff and residents on the importance of Fire Safety. We specifically focused on Fire, Flames and Smoke. Precautions are taken to prevent fires from occurring; however it is always important to know what to do if you find yourself in a real life fire situation. A fire may result in injury, death and property damage. Alert those in a structure to the presence of an uncontrolled fire in the event one occurs, to better enable those threatened by the fire to survive and evacuate the area.

The HCFP has taken fire measures to include education on what to do in a fire. Threats of fire safety refer to “Fire Hazards”. In case of a fire, plan and practice two escape routes. In a fire get out immediately; do not stop to collect personal items. If clothes catch fire, immediately STOP, DROP and ROLL.  If you must escape through smoke crawl to the nearest exit under the smoke. These are the few safety tips that were discussed with our community. Another key factor that was pinpointed to our residents was to take care while smoking. Carelessly discarded cigarettes are the leading cause of fire deaths in the U.S. Never smoke in bed or while drowsy because dropped embers may start a fire.  Also, if you smell natural gas avoid any open flames; do not turn on or off electrical switches or light any matches.

KNOW WHAT TO DO IN A FIRE
• DO NOT TRY TO FIGHT THE FIRE
• DO NOT STOP TO GATHER PERSONAL BELONGINGS
• GET OUT BY IMPLEMENTING YOUR FIRE ESCAPE PLAN USING THE CLOSEST OR SAFEST EXIT.
• IF SMOKE IS PRESENT, STAY AS LOW TO THE FLOOR AS POSSIBLE AND COVER YOUR MOUTH.
• CLOSE THE DOOR ON YOUR WAY OUT.
• USE STAIRWAY TO EXIT THE BUILDING.

DO NOT EVER USE THE ELEVATOR IN A FIRE

PASS (reminder of how to use a Fire Extinguisher): PULL, AIM, SQUEEZE, SWEEP

 

The third week of NSM at Franklin Park we educated the staff and residents on the importance of Sun Safety. Don’t avoid the sun completely, however too much sunlight can be harmful to your skin and overall health. Wearing a hat with a 2-3 inch brim all around is ideal for sun protection because it protects areas that are often exposed to intense sun, such as the ears, eyes, forehead, nose and scalp. Wear sunglasses to protect the delicate skin around the eyes, as well as the eyes themselves. Research shows long hours in the sun without protection increases the risk for developing eye disease and skin issues.

• Drink plenty of fluids: Drinking 6-12 glasses of water during the summer helps fight dehydration. Avoid caffeinated drinks in the sun because they cause the opposite, dehydration.
• Dress Appropriately: Wear loose fitting clothing with long sleeves and pants to protect your skin from the UV rays.
• Turn on the air conditioning: Beating the heat with air conditioning is a great way to prevent heat related illnesses.
• Be an early bird or a night owl: The sun rays are strongest between 10:00am and 4:00pm. If you’re planning outdoor activities, try to plan according to the cooler times of the day.
• Watch out for heat stroke: Signs of heat stroke include: confusion, disorientation, dry skin, excessive tiredness, headache, lethargy, nausea and rapid pulse. If you or someone else present signs and symptoms please seek medical attention immediately.
• Check on friends and family: Use the hotter months to catch up with friends and family, especially those who do not have air conditioning.
• Review your medications with your nurse or doctor: Some medications can have side effects that cause increased sensitivity to the sun and UV rays.
• Wear Sunscreen: Its only takes 15 minutes for the sun to damage unprotected skin. Apply every 15-30 minutes before you go outside and use at least 15 SPF. If around water activities apply more often.

 

The fourth and last week of NSM at Franklin Park we educated our staff and residents on the importance of staying safe and staying active. Being active is very important in our everyday lives, however we still need to remember the safety of the things we are doing. For example when enjoying activities know the risks and benefits.

Flexibility Training:
                
Exercising is a great way to stay fit and active. Also, doing exercises safely will help prevent injury. For example, when performing a static stretch take a deep breath and slowly exhale as you gently stretch the muscle to a point of tension. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds, relax and repeat the stretch two to four more times. Flexibility training allows greater movement and improved posture, while increasing physical and mental relaxation. Stretching before activity helps reduce risk or injury, it also helps release muscle tension and soreness.

Avoid these stretching mistakes:  (Source: acefitness.org)

•Do not bounce a stretch. Holding a stretch is more effective and there is less risk of injury
•Do not stretch a muscle that is not warmed up
•Do not strain or push a muscle too far. If a stretch hurts, ease up
•Do not hold your breath during the stretch. Continue to breathe normally

Some people are naturally more flexible. The less active you are, the less flexible you are likely to be. As with cardiovascular endurance and muscle strength, flexibility will improve with regular training.

 

Make a Difference in Safety: Injuries are the leading cause of disability of all ages, and the leading cause for death in Americans ranging from age 1 to age 44. However, many of these injuries can be prevented when proper safety measures are in place and followed.

The National Safety Council (NSC), who was founded in 1913 and chartered by Congress, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities. A key, pillar directed by the NSC is the journey to Safety Excellence. A successful safety program depends on spotting hazards early, evaluating their risk and removing and controlling them before any harm is done.