Celebrating New Year with close friends

Common Injuries from Drinking on New Year’s Eve

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New Year’s Eve has traditionally been celebrated with a champagne toast at midnight. And yet, every year parties to celebrate the New Year seem to get bigger and start earlier. This can result in a lot more alcohol consumed before the stroke of midnight, putting you at risk for an alcohol-related accident or injury. The best way to avoid this is to drink responsibly, but we’ve put together a list of some of the most common reasons people end up in the ER on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, with some more ideas to help you stay safe.

  1. Drunk Driving
    New Year’s Day is the worst day of the year for fatal car crashes involving alcohol — half of all fatal crashes on January 1 involve a driver who was drunk. You should never drive drunk, so make sure you have a plan before you go out. You can designate a driver who will remain sober throughout the evening, or you can call a taxi, or use a ride-share service like Uber or Lyft.
  1. Alcohol Poisoning
    ER visits for alcohol poisoning increase on New Year’s Day — in 2015, New York City saw a 50% increase in alcohol-related visits to the ER compared to an average day. A good rule of thumb to help avoid alcohol poisoning is to drink one glass of water with every alcoholic drink, and to limit yourself to one drink per hour. Symptoms of alcohol poisoning include vomiting, confusion, slow or irregular breathing and becoming unconscious. If you see someone experiencing these symptoms you should seek immediate medical help.
  2. Accident Injuries
    As your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) rises, so does the effects of alcohol on your nervous system, possibly resulting in impaired judgment, vision, and hearing, decreased coordination and balance, more risky behaviors and slower reaction times. All of these make you more prone to serious injury due to an accident—and we’re not even talking about motor vehicle accidents! Everyday accidents can result in several injuries that may need medical attention such as cuts that need stitches, serious sprains, or broken bones and head injuries. Because alcohol can decrease the amount of pain you feel after injury, if someone has a serious fall or other accident while drinking, they should seek medical attention.

This New Year’s Eve, Five Star ER encourages everyone to celebrate responsibly. However, if an emergency arises, you can trust our board-certified doctors and expert staff to treat your emergency. All four of our convenient locations are open 24/7, even over the holidays, so that you can receive the same quality care you’d expect from a traditional ER.

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About Five Star ER

Five Star ER is owned and operated by the physicians of US Acute Care Solutions, a respected provider of emergency physician services to hospitals and health systems across Texas for nearly 30 years. Our experienced physicians bring their excellent tradition of emergency care to a first-class, patient-centered freestanding ER.

Our patient-centered care means you will come first. Our freestanding ER provides the capabilities of a hospital emergency department, without the hassles and long waits that can be part of a hospital ER. From the comfortable lounge area and private exam rooms to our top-notch medical team and latest technology, patients can be door-to-doctor in less than 15 minutes.

This content was created to be purely educational in nature. This post is not meant to be used as a substitute for medical treatment or personal consultation regarding a medical condition. As always, if you or a loved one is suffering a life-threatening medical emergency or injury, call 911.

Connect with Five Star ER on Facebook, Instagram and Google+ for more information and health tips!

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Toy Safety Guidelines

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Toy Safety

Everyone loves getting gifts around the holidays, especially kids! You only want the best for your kids, so you want them to have safe and age-appropriate toys. We’ve put together a list of guidelines to follow when buying toys for kids ages 0-12 so you can make sure they are not presented with any dangers or hazards, and everyone can enjoy a safe and fun holiday gift-giving season!

Guidelines For All Ages

  • Read Labels — Labels on toys, such as “Not suitable for children under 3” or “Flame Resistant” are there for a reason. Read and heed these labels to make sure you buy toys that are age and instruction appropriate, as well as made of high-quality and safe materials.
  • Choose with Care — Keep in mind the child’s interest, skill level and age to choose toys that will be both safe for them to use, as well as fun for them!
  • Set-up and Clean-up — When opening new toys make sure all trash is discarded quickly. For younger children, plastic wrap can be dangerous and even deadly if played with. For older kids, toys with batteries and other small parts should be set-up with the help of an adult to make sure nothing is misplaced and electrical components are installed properly.

Ages 0 – 3

  • Make sure toys do not have choking hazards. Check toys regularly for wear and tear, since pieces that break off can become choking hazards as well. Anything that is less than 75 inches in diameter is a choking hazard.
  • Any soft toys, such as stuffed animals, should be machine washable.
  • Toys with strings or ribbons can create a strangulation hazard and should not be given to young children.

Ages 4 – 6

  • Avoid electrically operated toys, especially if they must be plugged in to use or have other heating elements.
  • Don’t give children of this age toys with projectiles, like foam bullet guns.
  • Magnets are used often in toys, but if they fall out of the toy and are swallowed they can cause serious internal damage.

Ages 7 – 9

  • Buy items that fit. It may be tempting to buy a bike a size too big so they will grow into it, but this can cause serious injury. Any sports equipment such as bikes, skates, scooters, etc. should fit your child now.
  • Art supplies should be labeled non-toxic and washable.
  • Science and craft kits are great gifts for this age, but make sure they are not too advanced by reading the label. Parental supervision for some kits may be necessary.

Ages 10 – 12

  • Children at this age may really like video games, but make sure the games they receive are age appropriate and have an “E” rating.
  • As your child needs little supervision for play at this age, make sure any board games or science and craft kits are written at a level that will be easy to understand and follow for your child.
  • Keep the toys from this age group away from and out of reach of smaller children, as they will have parts that can cause serious injury. Make sure your child knows to keep their toys in a safe place so they don’t become tripping hazards to themselves, or an even bigger danger to younger children.

The holidays are a time to be with your family and friends, but emergencies can still happen–and when they do you want to be taken care of FAST. That’s why there is Five Star ER. With our four convenient greater Austin locations and board certified doctors we can get you in and out and back to the holidays fast!

 

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About Five Star ER

Five Star ER is owned and operated by the physicians of US Acute Care Solutions, a respected provider of emergency physician services to hospitals and health systems across Texas for nearly 30 years. Our experienced physicians bring their excellent tradition of emergency care to a first-class, patient-centered freestanding ER.

Our patient-centered care means you will come first. Our freestanding ER provides the capabilities of a hospital emergency department, without the hassles and long waits that can be part of a hospital ER. From the comfortable lounge area and private exam rooms to our top-notch medical team and latest technology, patients can be door-to-doctor in less than 15 minutes.

This content was created to be purely educational in nature. This post is not meant to be used as a substitute for medical treatment or personal consultation regarding a medical condition. As always, if you or a loved one is suffering a life-threatening medical emergency or injury, call 911.

Connect with Five Star ER on Facebook, Instagram and Google+ for more information and health tips!

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Three Holiday Decoration Safety Tips

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Holiday Decorating Related Injuries

Almost 250 people are injured every day between November and January trying to put up their holiday decorations. One of the most common reasons people end up in the ER is from falling off ladders while decorating. This can result in lacerations and sprains, or more serious injuries like broken bones. Once the decorations are up, the chance for injury is not over, especially if the decorations used were old and damaged, or placed in areas that may cause dangerous situations, like fires.

Here are some tips to help you avoid some of the common causes of injury and keep you safe while decorating this season:

  1. Avoid Fires
    Real trees should not be placed near fireplaces, radiators or other heat sources, as this is a major fire hazard. Keeping trees watered can help reduce the risk of drying out and catching fire. Artificial trees should also be placed away from these items. Even if the tree was labeled as flame retardant or flame resistant, it can still catch on fire.
  2. Avoid Falls
    When hanging lights outside make sure your ladder is on level ground and sturdy enough to hold your weight, plus the weight of any decorations you may be carrying. Your ladder should also be three feet taller than where you will be hanging, or your roof line, so that you do not have to climb to the top or over-extend yourself. Have someone spot you and help hold the ladder steady to increase stability and safety.
  3. Avoid Electric Shock
    Before you hang your lights (inside or out), check to make sure they are not damaged, as they can start an electrical fire. Lights with frayed cords should not be used, and neither should lights that have loose connections or damaged and cracked sockets. If you need to replace a bulb in your lights, make sure to unplug the lights before doing so to reduce the risk of electrocution!

When emergencies happen, you want the best care and FAST, especially over the holidays. Unsure when your doctor’s office may be open over the holidays? We’re open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and our expert staff is always ready to take care of you and your emergency. Find your nearest Five Star ER location.

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About Five Star ER

Five Star ER is owned and operated by the physicians of US Acute Care Solutions, a respected provider of emergency physician services to hospitals and health systems across Texas for nearly 30 years. Our experienced physicians bring their excellent tradition of emergency care to a first-class, patient-centered freestanding ER.

Our patient-centered care means you will come first. Our freestanding ER provides the capabilities of a hospital emergency department, without the hassles and long waits that can be part of a hospital ER. From the comfortable lounge area and private exam rooms to our top-notch medical team and latest technology, patients can be door-to-doctor in less than 15 minutes.

This content was created to be purely educational in nature. This post is not meant to be used as a substitute for medical treatment or personal consultation regarding a medical condition. As always, if you or a loved one is suffering a life-threatening medical emergency or injury, call 911.

Connect with Five Star ER on Facebook, Instagram and Google+ for more information and health tips!

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on TumblrPrint this page

Top 5 Reasons for Thanksgiving ER Visits

By | Health Basics, Safety | No Comments

Deep Fried Turkey Danger on ThanksgivingThanksgiving is a time for giving thanks, enjoying time spent with friends and family, and good food. Amid all the merriment and festivities, there is an increased chance for injury and accident. Here are the top five reasons people go to the ER during the Thanksgiving holiday (and some ways to avoid them):

  1. Over Indulgence

Thanksgiving is known for being an indulgent holiday, so it’s no surprise that one of the main reasons people visit the ER is for eating or drinking too much. This can result in chest pain, upset stomach and sometimes an irregular heartbeat. Know your limits and when to say “no more” this Thanksgiving.

  1. Food Poisoning

Food poisoning doesn’t just come from a crazy concoction your great aunt brought to the table. The most common cause of food poisoning is from food being left out too long and reaching an unsafe temperature. The danger zone for bacteria growth that can lead to food poisoning is between 41 and 140 degrees. To keep food safe, keep hot food hot and cold food cold, and don’t allow food to sit out for long periods of time.

  1. Auto Accident

The busiest travel weekend of the year is Thanksgiving weekend, and more DUI arrests happen between Thanksgiving and the end of New Year’s Eve than any other time of the year. With busier roads and more chances of enjoying one drink too many, people can end up in the ER after an accident. Enjoying drinks with family and friends at the dinner table can be great, just make sure you know your limits – or, better yet, designate a sober driver.

  1. Knife Injuries

Before you even sit down for Thanksgiving dinner, you could end up in the ER! Make sure not to do any food prep work with dull knives, as that can increase risk of cuts. When using a knife, make sure to also take your time and focus on the task at hand to decrease the risk of cutting yourself.

  1. Burns

Another common kitchen accident at Thanksgiving is burns. Just like when using a knife, if you are handling hot foods — especially oils that can spatter easily — take your time and focus on your task. Avoid wearing loose clothing that could potentially catch fire, especially if you want to deep fry your turkey, which results in 60 injuries every year.

 

When emergencies happen, you want the best care and FAST, especially over the holidays. Every emergency matters at Five Star ER, and our patient-centered care means you come first. Plus, with all the care of a traditional ER minus the wait you can get in and out — and back to Thanksgiving dinner fast. Find your nearest Five Star ER location

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About Five Star ER

Five Star ER is owned and operated by the physicians of US Acute Care Solutions, a respected provider of emergency physician services to hospitals and health systems across Texas for nearly 30 years. Our experienced physicians bring their excellent tradition of emergency care to a first-class, patient-centered freestanding ER.

Our patient-centered care means you will come first. Our freestanding ER provides the capabilities of a hospital emergency department, without the hassles and long waits that can be part of a hospital ER. From the comfortable lounge area and private exam rooms to our top-notch medical team and latest technology, patients can be door-to-doctor in less than 15 minutes.

This content was created to be purely educational in nature. This post is not meant to be used as a substitute for medical treatment or personal consultation regarding a medical condition. As always, if you or a loved one is suffering a life-threatening medical emergency or injury, call 911.

Connect with Five Star ER on Facebook, Instagram and Google+ for more information and health tips!

 

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on TumblrPrint this page