Dads beware: Men over 50 most at risk of Christmas-related injury
The next time you see Dad hanging awkwardly off the roof trying to put up Christmas lights, don't believe him when he says "I've got this." That overconfidence puts him at higher risk of being injured in a fall this holiday season, according to the B.C.-based organization Community Against Preventable Injuries.
The group says men over 50 are more likely than any other demographic to suffer a preventable injury around the holidays, precisely because their experience makes them gung-ho about taking risks around the house.
"People say, 'I'm not going to get injured, I've done this 100,000 times before and nothing's gone wrong," Dr. Ian Pike, a spokesperson for Preventable, told CTV Vancouver.
A number of other factors also contribute to preventable injuries over the holidays, Pike said. For instance, people tend to rush through their tasks because there is much more to do, and they take an optimistic approach to risk-taking because of the festive mood.
With ladders, for instance, men are more likely to lean over and extend their reach while hanging Christmas lights, in order to get the house decorating done a little quicker.
But Pike says that's an unnecessary risk that can lead to some painful broken bones. "Don't try and extend the reach beyond the scope," he said. "Come down the ladder, move it, go back up the ladder."
Preventable says approximately 700 individuals are hospitalized each year in B.C. after falling off ladders - and many of those injuries happen around the holiday season.
The organization's message is simple: Don't cut corners. Do the job the right way, and you won't find yourself opening presents in a wheelchair on Dec. 25.