Total Worker Health™ is a strategy integrating occupational safety and health protection with health promotion to prevent worker injury and illness and to advance health and well-being.
The protection, preservation, and improvement of the health and well-being of all people who work are goals shared by workers, their families, and employers. Today, more than ever, there is increasing evidence that the work environment and the overall health, safety and well-being of the workers within it are strongly connected. Diminished health and injury, whether caused by work or resulting from non-work activities, reduces quality of life, opportunity, and income for workers and those dependent upon them. Conversely, workplaces with low risk of injury and enhanced opportunities for the total health of workers can lead to a vibrant, engaged and highly performing workforce.
via CDC – Total Worker Health What Is Total Worker Health? – NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Program.
Since its inception in 1979, The Skin Cancer Foundation has always recommended using a sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher as one important part of a complete sun protection regimen. Sunscreen alone is not enough, however. Read our full list of skin cancer prevention tips.
- Seek the shade, especially between 10 AM and 4 PM.
- Do not burn.Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths.
- Cover up with clothing, including a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses.
- Use a broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher every day.
- For extended outdoor activity, use a water-resistant, broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.
- Apply 1 ounce 2 tablespoons of sunscreen to your entire body 30 minutes before going outside.Reapply every two hours or immediately after swimming or excessive sweating.
- Keep newborns out of the sun. Sunscreens should be used on babies over the age of six months.Examine your skin head-to-toe every month.
- See your physician every year for a professional skin exam.
via Prevention Guidelines – SkinCancer.org.
Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Good nutrition, physical activity, and a healthy body weight are essential parts of a person’s overall health and well-being. Together, these can help decrease a person’s risk of developing serious health conditions, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and cancer. A healthful diet, regular physical activity, and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight also are paramount to managing health conditions so they do not worsen over time.
via Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Leading Health Indicators – Healthy People 2020.
Why Is Bicycle Safety So Important?
Bike riding is a lot of fun, but accidents happen. The safest way to use your bike is for transportation, not play. Every year, about 300,000 kids go to the emergency department because of bike injuries, and at least 10,000 kids have injuries that require a few days in the hospital. Some of these injuries are so serious that children die, usually from head injuries. A head injury can mean brain injury. That’s why its so important to wear your bike helmet. Wearing one doesn’t mean you can be reckless, but a helmet will provide some protection for your face, head, and brain in case you fall down.
via Bike Safety.
Back problems: Proper lifting No one is immune to back injury.
Whether you have a strong back or have hurt your back before, it is well worth it to:
- Stop yourself before casually picking up a light or heavy load.
- Plan in your mind for the best way to lift whats in front of you. This could include enlisting help from one or more people.
- Lift and move slowly and carefully.
The time you take to use the right lifting mechanics is far less than the days, weeks, or months it can take to heal from a back injury.
via Lifting properly to prevent back injury.
Water may be fun for children to play with — but it can also be deadly. Consider these water-safety tips for pools, natural bodies of water and household hazards.
Residential swimming pools and spas
Most children are drawn to water. It’s sparkly. Things float in it. And it’s fun to splash. But water safety is no laughing matter. Anyone can have a water-related accident — even children who know how to swim. To keep your children safe in and near the water, follow simple water-safety guidelines.
Multiple layers of protection can help ensure water safety and prevent drowning in a home pool or spa. If you have a pool or hot tub, follow all local safety ordinances. Also consider these general water-safety tips:
- Fence it in. Surround your pool with a fence that’s at least 4 feet (1.2 meters) tall. Make sure slatted fences have no gaps wider than 4 inches (10.2 centimeters), so kids can’t squeeze through. Avoid chain-link fences, which can be easy for children to climb. Install self-closing and self-latching gates with latches that are beyond a child’s reach.
- Install alarms. If your house serves as part of your pool enclosure, protect any doors leading to the pool area with an alarm. Add an underwater pool alarm that sounds when something hits the water. Make sure you can hear the alarm inside the house.
- Block pool and hot tub access. Use a rigid, motorized safety cover to block access to the pool when it’s not in use. Secure a cover on hot tubs as well. Empty inflatable pools after each use. Don’t allow water to collect on top of the pool or hot tub cover. Remove aboveground pool steps or ladders or lock them behind a fence when the pool isn’t in use.
- Teach children to swim. Most children can learn to swim at about age 5 — but know that swimming lessons won’t necessarily prevent a child from drowning.
- Remove toys. Don’t leave pool toys in the water. A child may fall into the water while trying to retrieve a toy.
- Keep your eyes peeled. Never leave children unsupervised near a pool or hot tub. During social gatherings, adults who know how to swim can take turns being the “designated watcher.” Don’t rely on air-filled or foam toys, such as water wings, noodles or inner tubes, to keep children safe.
- Beware of drains. Don’t allow children to play near or sit on pool or hot tub drains. Body parts and hair may become entrapped by the strong suction. Use drain covers, and consider installing multiple drains to reduce the suction.
- Keep emergency equipment handy. Store a safety ring with a rope beside the pool. Make sure you always have a phone in the pool area.
Natural bodies of water
Swimming conditions can be unpredictable in lakes, rivers and oceans. Water depth can change rapidly, as can water temperature, currents and the weather. Murky water may conceal hazards. Follow these water-safety tips:
- Don’t swim alone. Never allow children to swim alone or without adult supervision.
- Wear a life jacket. Children should wear personal flotation devices whenever riding in a boat or fishing. An air-filled swimming aid isn’t a substitute for a life jacket.
- Feet first. The first descent into any body of water should be a jump — feet first. Before the jump, check water depth and temperature and look for underwater hazards.
- Stay in designated areas. At public beaches, swim only in areas set aside for swimming. Don’t allow children to swim in drainage ditches or other water-filled areas not intended for swimming.
- Beware of thin ice. Drowning can occur in the winter, too. Avoid walking, skating or riding on weak or thawing ice.
Toilets, bathtubs and buckets
The water in common household items can be dangerous for young children. A baby can drown in just 1 inch (2.5 centimeters) of water. A curious toddler can fall into a toilet, bucket or fish tank. Taking these precautions can help:
- Keep the bathroom door closed. Install a safety latch or doorknob cover on the outside of the door.
- Supervise bath time. Never leave a child alone in the bathtub or in the care of another child. Drain water from the tub immediately after use.
- Shut toilet lids. Install childproof locks on toilet lids.
- Store buckets safely. Empty buckets and other containers immediately after use. Don’t leave them outside, where they may accumulate water.
Of course, even if you’re diligent about water safety, accidents are still possible. Prepare for an emergency by learning cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Quick action can save a life.
The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons released a position statement on the safe use of trampolines. According to the statement, trampolines should not be used by children younger than 6.
- Provide “careful adult supervision and proper safety measures” for trampolines used for physical education, competitive gymnastics, diving training and similar activities.
- Only one person should use a trampoline at any time.
- A spotter should be present when someone is jumping.
- Somersaults or high-risk maneuvers should only be performed with proper use of protective equipment, such as a harness.
- Supporting bars, strings and surrounding landing surfaces should have adequate protective padding.
- Equipment should be checked regularly for safety conditions.
- Trampoline ladders should be removed after use to prevent unsupervised access by young children.
Around 20 percent of injuries to the spinal cord caused by trampoline use are due to jumpers bumping into each other, trying to do stunts, falling off the trampoline or falling onto the frame or springs of the trampoline, reports BrainandSpinalCord.org.
In 1895, Joseph Malins wrote a poem entitled “Ambulance Down in the Valley”, and the following is an excerpt from his poetic case for prevention:
Better guide well the young than reclaim them when old,
For the voice of true wisdom is calling.
“To rescue the fallen is good, but ’tis best
To prevent other people from falling.”
Better close up the source of temptation and crime
Than deliver from dungeon or galley;
Better put a strong fence ’round the top of the cliff
Than an ambulance down in the valley.
Our current medical system is very much like that “ambulance down in the valley”. The current onslaught of people suffering from chronic disease, illnesses and injuries is disturbing. However, even more disheartening is that many, if not most, of those medical conditions could be avoided or significantly delayed – if only those people could turn back the hands of time and alter the millions of small but significant daily choices that led to those unintended consequences. The harsh reality is that largely, how we live dictates how we die. We would be better served to consider the full value of health rather than the inexorable cost of dying. Let’s continue to build a strong fence ’round the top of the cliff.
Injury: The Leading Cause of Death Among Persons 1-44In 2007 in the United States, injuries, including all causes of unintentional and violence-related injuries combined, accounted for 51% of all deaths among persons ages 1-44 years of age – that is more deaths than non-communicable diseases and infectious diseases combined.Injury Deaths Compared to Other Leading Causes of Death for Persons Ages 1-44, United States, 2007Injury FactsMore than 180,000 deaths from injury each year — 1 person every 3 minutes. Leading cause of death for people ages 1-44 in the US. More than 2.8 million people hospitalized with injury each year. More than 29 million people treated in Emergency Department for injury each year. More than $406 billion annually in medical costs and lost productivity.
via CDC – Injury: The Leading Cause of Death for Persons 1-44 in U.S. – Injury Center.
The power lawn mower is one of the most dangerous tools around the home. Each year, approximately 68,000 persons with injuries caused by power mowers were treated in emergency departments. More than 9,000 of the people hurt were younger than 18 years. Older children and adolescents were most often hurt while cutting lawns as chores or as a way to earn money.
Lawn mower injuries include deep cuts, loss of fingers and toes, broken and dislocated bones, burns, and eye and other injuries. Some injuries are very serious. Both users of mowers and those who are nearby can be hurt.
- To prevent lawn mower injuries to children, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the following:
- Try to use a mower with a control that stops the mower from moving forward if the handle is let go.
- Children younger than 16 years should not be allowed to use ride-on mowers. Children younger than 12 years should not use walk-behind mowers.
- Make sure that sturdy shoes (not sandals or sneakers) are worn while mowing.
- Prevent injuries from flying objects, such as stones or toys, by picking up objects from the lawn before mowing begins. Use a collection bag for grass clippings or a plate that covers the opening where cut grass is released. Have anyone who uses a mower wear hearing and eye protection.
- Make sure that children are indoors or at a safe distance well away from the area that you plan to mow.
- Start and refuel mowers outdoors, not in a garage or shed. Mowers should be refueled with the motor turned off and cool.
- Make sure that blade settings (to set the wheel height or dislodge debris) are done by an adult, with the mower off and the spark plug removed or disconnected.
- Do not pull the mower backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary, and carefully look for children behind you when you mow in reverse.
- Always turn off the mower and wait for the blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, or crossing gravel paths, roads, or other areas.
- Do not allow children to ride as passengers on ride-on mowers.