Holiday Health and Safety Tips from Dr. Snowber
This time of year is often spent enjoying time with friends and family, being thankful for all that we have and bringing to focus what’s important in our lives. Above all, we should be mindful of our continued health and the safety and well-being of those we love. Here are a list of tips we can all use this holiday season brought to you by Silver Cross Family Medicine Physician, Dr. Khalil Snowber.
We know you’ve heard it a million times before, but washing your hands can easily prevent a vast number of viruses and illnesses that can bring you down around the holidays. Encourage those around you to do the same.
Dr. Snowber’s advice: “Scrubbing your hands with a quarter-sized dollop of liquid soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before rinsing can drastically reduce the amount of germs and bacteria on your hands – And don’t forget to clean under your nails!"
Whether you’re visiting your sister in the next town over, or your Great-Aunt and Uncle out of state, make sure to drive and arrive safely. Ensure your passengers are all safely wearing their seat belts. If you are traveling with youngsters, make sure to assist them with buckling up properly. Also, wherever you are spending your holidays, don’t drink and drive!
Recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that every day, 29 people in the U.S. die in motor vehicle crashes involving an alcohol-impaired driver. Do your part in not becoming another statistic! Dr. Snowber advises to “Plan ahead! If you know you will be consuming alcoholic beverages, arrange for a safe ride home with a taxi or other rideshare company.”
If you’re doing the cooking or preparing any dishes for your holiday parties, keep your family safe from food-related illness by being mindful of keeping raw or undercooked food away from ready-to-eat foods and eating surfaces. Check that food is cooked to the appropriate temperature and refrigerate promptly!
“Make sure you’re putting leftovers into the refrigerator, or somewhere 40° or cooler, within two hours of being cooked.” Dr. Snowber suggests. “One of the most common bacterial causes of food poisoning is from Clostridium Perfringens – a bacteria that grows in cooked foods left at room temperature.”
Be Smoke Free
We’ve all heard the dangers of second hand smoke, and being around a large group of smokers can have negative effects on a person – so encourage the smokers to step outside or at the very least, look for proper ventilation of the area to lessen the remaining smoke.
If you still smoke, consider your health and the health of those around you - it’s not too late to quit. Dr. Snowber encourages those still smoking to seek resources to help with quitting. “It can be very difficult to quit smoking, so I encourage anyone with the inkling to quit, to sign up for the Freedom from Smoking program offered at Silver Cross Hospital starting on Jan. 2. Perfect for your New Year’s Resolution!”
Take Care of Yourself!
You can’t do it all. Don’t let the holiday stress deplete your health AND your wallet. Keep a positive outlook and find a balance between work, home and play. Getting enough sleep at night is key to staying energized and focused on the (many) tasks most of us undertake during the holidays. Dr. Snowber urges anyone who needs to hear it, “Being PRESENT is more valuable than any PRESENT you’ll find under the tree. Let go of the things you can’t change and don’t take for granted the time you have with the ones you love.”
Dr. Khalil Snowber recently joined the Silver Cross Medical Group and takes great pride in serving patients of all ages. His office is located at 14831 W. 159th St in Lockport and he is accepting new patients.