Common Holiday Injuries

By: Sandy Smith

holiday injuries

Regardless of whether you’ve been naughty or nice, some people can’t seem to avoid Christmas-related injuries – from hanging lights and defective decorations, to cuts from wrapping gifts and falls from ladders. Who knew Christmas could be so painful?

The holidays are a time for celebration, when we sit down with the family and relax around a roaring fire… but unfortunately, this isn’t the case for everyone during the festive break.

The experts at Accident Claims Advice (ACA) thought it would be interesting to see which injuries cause the most upset over Christmas. Using data provided by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, they analyzed an entire years’ worth of accidents and discovered 337 that occurred over the holidays in 2016. A few of the most interesting findings are:

  • 101 of 337 injuries somehow involved Christmas lights.
  • 20 of 337 injuries where from swallowing objects.
  • 20-29-year olds actually turn out to be the least accident prone.
  • 9 injuries where due to dancing too much at Christmas parties.
  • 60 injuries were sustained by falling from a ladder.

From cuts while wrapping and opening presents, shoulder sprains and slips, to swallowing Christmas decorations whole – this list has it all! Some memorable examples include:

  • 36-year-old male was putting up Christmas decorations, looked up, sneezed and swallowed a thumb tack.
  • 44-year-old female was on a ladder taking down Christmas lights when she slipped and fell off her porch.
  • 10-year-old male was riding a hoverboard he got as a Christmas present and fell off.
  • 34-year-old female was drinking alcohol at a Christmas party and fell over, hitting her head on a table.
  • 65-year-old female was carrying a Christmas tree down steps to basement at home and fell.
  • 32-year-old male was dancing at a Christmas party when he twisted and sprained his left knee.
  • 14-year-old male stapled his finger while using a staple gun to hang Christmas lights.
  • 39-year-old male was hanging Christmas lights on an outdoor tree when he burned his wrist, causing him to startle and fall 16 feet from ladder.

After reviewing all 337 accidents, ACA found that there was a fairly even split between males (157 injuries) and females (180 injuries). They then looked at what parts of the body get injured the most over the festive period. Out of all the accidents they examined, 52 (15 percent) were lower back injuries due to lifting heavy objects (likely Christmas decoration boxes from the attic), while 43 (13 percent) were cuts to the hand and another 41 (12 percent) were bumps to the head.

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