The simple act of shoveling snow can be dangerous if you aren’t prepared for the job. There are many reports every year of people who have gone out to clear snowfall from their sidewalks or driveways and suffered:
- Heart attacks
- Slips and falls
- Back and joint strain
- Other accidents and injuries
If you’re the one who “holds the shovel” in your family or at your place of business when the flakes start to fall, you might want to pay attention to these four easy tips that can help you avoid an unexpected trip to the hospital or doctor’s office:
- Stay warm. Although you may be working up a sweat as you shovel, make sure to dress in warm layers that will help to protect you from cold-related conditions like frostbite and hypothermia. Staying warm will also keep your muscles loose and reduce the chance of injury.
- Use the right tools. Make sure you have the tools you need to clear the snow, such as a wide shovel in good repair, thick gloves to protect from blisters, and ice-melt treatments that can prevent refreezing and the need for more shoveling.
- Limit strain. Stay hydrated, and take frequent breaks. Lift with your legs instead of your back, and try to push snow to the side to avoid lifting when possible. If you have a medical condition that makes heavy activity difficult, talk to your doctor first.
- Pay attention. Shoveling snow can be tedious and boring work, but make sure that you remain aware of your surroundings, especially if you’re clearing snow near busy roadways or walkways.
Staying safe and avoiding injuries can seem like a full-time job in the deepest part of an icy winter, but you can prevent a lot of risks by simply following a few common-sense steps like these. For regular tips and information about protecting yourself and keeping your family safe, connect with Lane & Lane on Facebook.