TYLER (KYTX) - It's a familiar, yearly holiday task for many families, stringing lights and decorating the outside of homes, but it's also becoming a dangerous one. CBS 19's Amanda Roberson joins us to explain why Cristmas light injuries are a concern.
Nationwide there are about 3,000 Christmas light related injuries each year. Those injuries usually involve a ladder, and like most one story houses a wall about 10-12 feet tall. The challenge, and risk, is trying to get these lights up beautifully and safely, but that can be a dangerous and even deadly combination.
Emergency rooms see a huge increase in patients falling from roofs and ladders this time of year and it all has to do with hanging lights. From broken bones, head injuries to back injuries, a little carelessness can lead to big pain.
Trinity Mother Frances Emergency Medicine Dr. Everett Holley has a few recommendations for people who think they can hang lights without professional help. "This is meant to be a joyous happy season so we really encourage people to have great safety involved. It's always best if you're having to put lights up to have two people do so. Have one person supporting the ladder underneath you, not stretching too far that puts yourself at risk. On way to avoid that is you just have to move the ladder more frequently."
Many professional Christmas light companies CBS 19 spoke with said the majority of their calls come from wives who don't want their husbands getting on a ladder.
Some other safety suggestions include taking your time, don't do anything you don't feel comfortable doing, and if you're getting on a ladder make sure you have a spotter. a strong wind gust or a distracting phone call can also add to the danger.
Doctors said sometimes it's not obvious that you've broken a bone or gotten some other type of injury. If part of your body doesn't work quite right, or hurts when you apply extra pressure, it's best to see a doctor.