Health at Home

Health at home is an interesting facet of life and one that can easily be maintained by a person with the right knowledge and understanding. This article will take a look at some of the ways in which a person's health can be maintained in the home by doing the right things and avoiding doing the wrong things!

The first thing that can make a big difference to your health in the home is to eliminate where possible anything that might be dangerous or could lead to an accident happening. While that might sound like an over-simplification of base common sense, it is surprising when you visit other people's homes just how many "accidents waiting to happen" can be spotted at first glance. The obvious things should be checked over first of all.

Electricity

One of the greatest threats to health and indeed to life itself is electricity. The first things to check over, therefore will be anywhere that electricity could be a hazard, such as any damaged or badly fitted electrical plugs or exposed electrical wiring in any rooms. Plug sockets can be a particularly dangerous hazard when ill-fitted or loose as a child (or an adult, for that matter) could accidentally pull the cover off the wall and expose the live mains wiring. A shock from this can result in death, so this is one area that diligence can literally be a life or death choice.

Plugs on appliances should also be checked to insure they are sound and have no cracks or breaks. Most modern appliances come with molded plugs already fitted, but older appliances may have user fitted plugs. These should be checked by someone with electrical experience or a professional to make sure the wires are tightly and securely fixed and there is no chance that they could be removed by a child, exposing any bare wire.

Plug sockets should never be overloaded with multi-adapters and if you need to have several appliances use a single wall socket, use a plug strip with a safety cutout or at least an on-off switch.

Fire Hazard

The threat of a house fire is another dangerous hazard that can be avoided in many cases by using some simple common sense and keeping inflammable materials and liquids safely stored out of harm's way. Hazardous, inflammable cleaning fluids should always be kept in a secure storage space not accessible by children and preferably away from the main house in a garage or outbuilding such as a utility store or garden shed. That also goes for oil, kerosene and other petroleum based fluids, propane and other inflammable gas fuels and any chemicals that might cause fire.

Always keep narrow passageways and doorways clear of clutter so that in the unfortunate event of a house fire, the occupants can quickly and safely get to the exits.

Food Safety

An often overlooked aspect to safety in the home is not the physical dangers of accidents that can occur around the house or garden or physical damage during fitness training, but the health repercussions of eating foods that have become spoiled or otherwise unsafe to eat. This can happen when an item of food has been kept in the wrong conditions or has been allowed to sit untouched for too long.

With store-bought foods, we have some safety net as food product manufacturers and supermarkets are required by law to print a date on the packaging that informs consumers of the time limit the food ought to be kept for and when it should have been consumed by. This is the "sell-by" or "use-by" date you see stamped on food packaging.

If you consume food after the printed date, there is a risk the food will be spoiled and a chance that harmful bacteria has increased to potentially health-impacting levels. Also if food is meant to be refrigerated or kept below a certain maximum temperature and is allowed to sit in a place where the temperature exceeds that recommendation, the food can also spoil.

Common sense will dictate that fresh foods such as meat and dairy products as well as packaged processed foods should be refrigerated and consumed before their expiry date to avoid potential health problems. The best rule of thumb is to be sure you check the expiry date stamped on food packaging before consuming it and don't eat anything that smells "wrong" or appears discolored as if it may have spoiled.