Of all children’s products, balloons are the leading cause of suffocation death, according to CPSC injury data. Accidents involving balloons tend to occur in two ways. Some children have sucked uninflated balloons into their mouths, often while attempting to inflate them. This can occur when a child who is blowing up the balloon inhales or takes a breath to prepare for the next blow, and draws the balloon back into the mouth and throat. Some deaths may have resulted when children swallowed uninflated balloons they were sucking or chewing on. The CPSC knows of one case in which a child was chewing on an uninflated balloon when she fell from a swing. The child hit the ground and, in a reflex action, inhaled sharply. She suffocated on the balloon.
The second kind of accident involves balloon pieces. Children have drawn pieces of broken balloons that they were playing with into their throats. If a balloon breaks and is not discarded, for example, some children may continue to play with it, chewing on pieces of the balloon or attempting to stretch it across their mouths and suck or blow bubbles in it. These balloon pieces are easily sucked into the throat and lungs. Balloons mold to the throat and lungs and can completely block breathing.
Because of the danger of suffocation, the CPSC recommends that parents and guardians do not allow children under the age of eight to play with uninflated balloons without supervision. The CPSC does not believe that a completely inflated balloon presents a hazard to young children. If the balloon breaks, however, CPSC recommends that parents immediately collect the pieces of the broken balloon and dispose of them out of the reach of young children.
On December 21st, 2017, The Interfaith Council of Southwestern CT held an event for National Homeless Persons Memorial Day 2017 in Stamford.
As one of the sponsors of the event, OPTIMUS attended the event, in hope of a world without homelessness. The event was filmed by NEWS 12.
December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind in this holiday season:
Balloons Children can choke or suffocate on deflated or broken balloons. Keep deflated balloons away from children younger than eight years old. Discard broken balloons immediately.
Small balls and other toys with small parts For children younger than age three, avoid toys with small parts, which can cause choking.
Scooters and other riding toys Riding toys, skateboards and in-line skates go fast, and falls could be deadly. Helmets and safety gear should be worn properly at all times and they should be sized to fit.
Magnets High-powered magnet sets are dangerous and should be kept away from children. Whether marketed for children or adults, building and play sets with small magnets should also be kept away from small children.
Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine every season. Vaccination to prevent influenza is particularly important for people who are at high risk of serious complications from influenza. See People at High Risk of Developing Flu-Related Complications for a full list of age and health factors that confer increased risk.
Flu vaccination has important benefits. It can reduce flu illnesses, doctors’ visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations.
Different flu vaccines are approved for use in different groups of people. Factors that can determine a person’s suitability for vaccination, or vaccination with a particular vaccine, include a person’s age, health (current and past) and any relevant allergies.
Flu shots are approved for use in pregnant women and people with chronic health conditions. There are flu shots that also are approved for use in people as young as 6 months of age and up.
CDC recommends use of the flu shot (inactivated influenza vaccine or IIV) and the recombinant influenza vaccine (RIV). The nasal spray flu vaccine (live attenuated influenza vaccine or LAIV) should not be used during 2017-2018.
More information is available at Who Should Get Vaccinated Against Influenza.
End HIV transmission
You’ve helped us fight HIV. Now, let’s end it. This World AIDS Day join the fight to end the negative impact of HIV.
This year in the UK there have been the first significant reductions in HIV diagnoses for gay men in London, thanks to frequent testing, rapid treatment and PrEP. Let’s grow this success so that it includes everybody at risk, across the UK.
But our fight is not just about the virus. For the more than 100,000 people living with HIV in the UK, ignorance and discrimination can still limit opportunities, preventing them from living full and happy lives. HIV means you are more likely to live in poverty, and more likely to have poor mental health.
This is an exciting turning point. But we need a new burst of energy to end stigma, end HIV transmission and end the isolation experienced by people living with HIV, for good.
WHAT IS WORLD AIDS DAY?
World AIDS Day takes place on the 1st December each year. It’s an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness. Founded in 1988, World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day.