Monday, November 26, 2012

Stranger Danger: What it Really Means and How to Help Keep Kids and Others Safe

Stranger Danger is a slogan that has been around for many years. It has aimed to keep children safe by teaching them to not talk to strangers or those perceived as dangerous individuals. We think more explanation on the danger part will help children and others realize when a situation is dangerous and when it is ok to talk to strangers when in need of help. Below are some tips we have compiled to keep you and your children safe from danger.

Travel in Groups
The best way to stay safe is by traveling with a buddy or with a group of friends when going to school or playing outside. When you are with other people, dangerous individuals are less likely to try and approach you. Remember, there is safety in numbers!
Build Confidence in Children
Teach children and others that if someone ever tries to abduct, grab or take them, that they can fight back. Here is just a few ways to fight back: scream, kick, bite, and put up a good struggle. If you are able to get away, run to the nearest adult or group of people for safety.
Teach Children Which Adults to Trust
 It is important that children realize that not all adults are dangerous strangers. Teach children the type of adults they can seek out and trust. Some examples include a police officer, a security guard, or another woman with children.
Other Important Tips for Keeping Safe:
*Never put identifying information such as names on purses or backpacks or where a predator could see it.
*Store updated photos and important information such as fingerprints of your children in case something should ever happen to them and you would need to provide this to police.
*Never leave school or another function with someone who makes you feel uncomfortable. Trust your instincts.
*A common trick used by predators and child molesters is asking a child about helping with an emergency, a hurt pet or a hurt family member. Make sure your child knows not to trust a stranger like this and to get help immediately.
*Make sure children feel comfortable discussing their safety and well being. If something were to happen to them, you would want them to feel safe telling you about it without them feeling like they did something wrong.
*Always remember, if you or someone you are with feels threatened in any way, please call 9-1-1 immediately for help. 

Helpful Information for Parents:
Video on Stranger Danger:

Monday, November 12, 2012

Protect Yourself during Flu Season

Staying healthy and taking care of your body is important to your overall health and well-being. From now until March, many people will come down with seasonal influenza, also known as the flu. In order to prevent those from getting sick, follow the following guidelines to keep you and your family well!

The flu is a highly contagious respiratory illness which is caused by influenza A and B viruses that attack the body by spreading through the upper and lower respiratory tract. While a cold can sometimes feel like the flu, it is not near as debilitating. Flu-like symptoms include high fever, headache, fatigue and weakness in the body. These symptoms can also appear almost instantly from the time you are infected.
The flu virus is spread quite easily through the air. When someone sneezes who has the flu, he or she infects the air around them. If you were to be close to that person and inhaled droplets in the air that contained the virus, then you could become infected too. Other ways the flu is transmitted is through sharing drinks or utensils, or handling items that an infected person used. If the flu virus were to get on your skin, and then you touched or rubbed your eyes, mouth or nose, then you could become infected as well. This is why it is so important to ALWAYS wash your hands when going to the bathroom and before you eat.

What to do to Prepare for Flu Season
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone six months and older get a flu vaccine once a year. By getting this vaccine, you are taking the first step in protecting yourself from getting this awful illness. Flu vaccines are provided at pharmacies and doctor offices as well as at schools and places of employment.
Secondly, taking everyday preventative actions to stop the spread of germs is important to staying flu-free as well. This includes:
-       Washing your hands with soap and water
-       Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing
-       Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread easily this way!
-       If you get sick, limit contact with others to prevent further infection in others
Lastly, if you get the flu, there are antiviral drugs that can treat it, but it will still take time to get over and get back to being healthy. Visit your doctor if you think you might have the flu.
More information on the flu here:
YouTube Video on the flu:

Monday, November 5, 2012

Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

As the weather becomes colder throughout the U.S., it is important for people to keep in mind the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning and how to avoid it from happening to you or your loved ones. Also known as the quiet killer, carbon monoxide comes from fumes produced by furnaces, vehicles, portable generators, stoves, lanterns, gas ranges, or burning charcoal or wood. When the fumes become trapped inside the home, it can cost lives.

When the power goes out due to emergencies such as bad weather or hurricanes, the use of alternative power options such as portable items used for heaters and cooking goes up. This can be especially dangerous if fumes from these items build up in the home. This is why it is so important to make sure your homes are equipped with carbon monoxide detectors. (Don’t forget to replace the batteries on a regular basis!) More than 450 people die each year due to unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning. By recognizing and preventing carbon monoxide poisoning, we can help lower the number of unintentional deaths and help save lives.
Carbon monoxide poisoning has symptoms that are very similar to the flu. Because of this, many people do not realize they have had carbon monoxide poisoning. The most common symptoms are: headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion.
What can we do to help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning?
·        Have your heating and water system (or anything serviced by gas) checked once a year for any problems by a qualified technician.

·        Install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in your home and change the batteries at least once a year. 

·        Please seek medical attention or call 9-1-1 immediately if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.

·        Do not use camp stoves, generators, grills or anything gasoline or charcoal-burning inside the home or garage.

·        Never leave a vehicle running in the garage.

·        Never heat your home with a gas oven

·        Do not burn anything in a stove or fireplace without ventilation.
Remember, carbon monoxide poisoning is preventable. Make sure to protect yourself and your family by being prepared and aware. If you think you might have carbon monoxide poisoning, please call the Poison Control Network at 1-800-222-1222. For more information on carbon monoxide poisoning, please visit:

YouTube Video: