Tips to stay safe and healthy this Diwali season

Diwali, the festival of lights, is already spreading its magic with aroma of sweets, glittering market places and a festive spirit all around. The colourful fancy firecrackers are occupying the centre stage, leaving us with festive fervour. Though Diwali wipes out the darkness and brings brightness in our lives, the festive vibes during and after Diwali can put our health at stake in many ways. Gorging on sweets and savouries can lay an extra burden on our body, especially if someone is diabetic or following a weight loss program. The sudden thundering sound of crackers may shoot up the blood pressure of seniors or others with a cardiac condition. Fumes from crackers can lead to respiratory problems and the list goes on.

Let’s keep the celebratory spirit high by following a few health and safety tips this Diwali season. Awareness and reiteration of helpful information can definitely help us enjoy the festival and bring home only happiness.

1) Health and safety tips for Diwali:

Diwali tips for elderly: They need special care

We may be busy moving around during the festival time, but remember, care and blessing from elders make our festivals complete and remarkable. Ensuring a safe celebration, considering the health needs and limitations of elderly is a must. Make sure to keep them safe and comfortable by providing enough protection from noise and other pollutants.

· Seniors should stay away from the pollutants and house-cleaning chores, especially if they suffer from asthma or bronchitis.

· They should avoid walking on the streets during the early morning hours and late evening hours as this is the prime time for bursting crackers.

· Don’t let elders stay alone in the home. If family members are busy around other activities, hire a person from a home healthcare agency to look after them.

· Close all the windows and doors in the evening hours to avoid noise and smoke entering inside.

· Senior citizens should watch out what and how much they eat. Overeating can cause acute uneasiness, digestive troubles and other health conditions.

· Noise pollution can lead to stress, hypertension and annoyance in elderly people. So, be patient with them and extend support as much as possible.

· Being busy with celebration, do not forget to administer their regular medication. · Aid or support elders with arthritis or other mobility issues.

Take care of the kids:

Festive foods are loaded with sugar and fat. It’s hard to say “not to have or have less” to your little ones who remain elated during the festivals. As a parent, we need to take a few precautions to make their feasting healthy and fun activity thrilling.

· If you have prepared sweets and snacks ahead of Diwali, keep the storage box away from your kid’s eyesight. Give them in moderation, as on the festival day, they might go break-free.

· Serve small quantities of snacks and savouries to your kid only during snack time. · If your child has any food sensitivity, talk to him/her about that and convince not to indulge in those food types even if someone offers.

· Intake of sweets can leave them dehydrated; hence make sure your child drinks plenty of water at regular intervals.

· Buy crackers from licenced agency only to avoid any accidental hazard due to old, unsafe, or poorly manufactured crackers.

· Do not allow your kid to wear synthetic cloth as it can easily catch fire. Prefer cotton clothes.

· Make your kid wear appropriate footwear to avoid burns in feet and lower leg while lighting fireworks.

· Keep an eye on them while bursting crackers. Make sure the child doesn’t burst it in hand or by leaning over it. Any stunt using crackers should be avoided.

· Burst crackers only in open spaces and far from crowded area.

· Let your child try out any new cracker only with you after reading the instructions carefully.

· Wash your kid’s hands thoroughly with soap before and after eating foods.

Diwali tips for diabetes patients:

Lots of tempting sweets and snacks would find their place around you, making it difficult for you to control your cravings. Don’t worry! You can still enjoy the sugar-bonded festival by keeping a few things in your mind.

· Don’t skip your regular exercises.

· Don’t go with store-bought sweets; always hang on home-made delicacies.

· Get your blood tested before and after Diwali to keep track of your sugar levels and spike, if any.

· Watch out your calorie intake and make suitable healthy food adjustments accordingly. This will make you enjoy the Diwali festival on a full swing.

· Do not skip your medicines being busy in celebrations. Refill your diabetes medicines and insulin on time. · Don’t stress yourself thinking about your diabetes. Just keep your stress away and enjoy the festival to the fullest. Creating positive vibes inside you will always help you stay healthy.

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Recommendations for asthma patients:

Bursting crackers can disperse perilous allergens in the environment creating steep increase in respiratory disorders. If you are an asthma patient, it’s never too late to prevent yourself from inhaling chemicals which are the worst trigger for you. Follow the below-mentioned tips to protect your lungs and avoid asthma attack on this auspicious festival.

· Never skip your medications. Always keep your inhalers handy if you are heading out of the house.

· Gargle with warm water and inhale steam whenever necessary. This will ease irritation in the throat and congestion in the chest.

· Have a glass of warm water before you hit your bed and prefer drinking lukewarm water throughout the day.

· Avoid smoking and alcohol during the festival.

· Drink herbal tea to ease chest and nasal congestion.

· Use good quality mask to cover your face before you step out of your house.Yoga can tackle asthma more effectively and can help you breathe easily. Practise it every day in the Diwali season.

2) Important tips for burns during Diwali

Bursting crackers has been an integral part of Diwali celebration for decades, but a little carelessness and negligence has always led to firework-related injuries. Thousands of people, irrespective of their age group walk to the causality unit of hospitals every year. Here, we suggest a few tips to deal with the burns during Diwali.

First-degree burns: These affect only the outer layer of the skin (epidermis) and there is not much to worry about.

· The burnt area should be kept in cold water. One can also apply cold compress over it.

· Leave the burn uncovered when the pain subsides.

· Do not apply any sticky ointment over the burn.

· If a large area is burnt or the victim is a child, visit a hospital.

Second-degree burns: They affect epidermis and dermis both, even causing blisters.

Keep the burnt area under running water for some time. When the burning sensation subsides, dab dry the area.

· Do not apply any ointment.

· Do not try to prick the blisters.

· Medical intervention is needed in a second-degree burn. Take the patient to the hospital once his/her condition is stable.

Third-degree burns: They not only affect the epidermis and dermis, but goes underneath the skin to a deeper level.

· Slightly cover the burn with a clean and thin cotton wet cloth to avoid any pollutant or infectious element get into the wound. Do not use any other fabric that sticks to the wound.

· Try to make the person comfortable.

· Reach out to the emergency care immediately to seek proper treatment.

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3) Tips for the post-Diwali detox: Facilitating the exit of pesky toxins from the body through a natural and healthy detox method is always a key! Unintended binging on sweets, mouth-watering snacks and back-to-back trips to your relatives and friend’s house, now requires a good rejuvenation. Yes! It’s post-Diwali time to detox and flush toxins out of your body. Tips include:

· Keep your body well hydrated by drinking 4 to 6 glasses of water every day.

· Kick your day by drinking lukewarm lemon water early in the morning. This helps to remove toxins from the digestive system and also keeps indigestion and bloating related issues away.

· Add cucumbers and tomatoes in your diet

· Prefer having low-calorie breakfast, fibre rich lunch, healthy evening snack and a light and nutritious dinner to minimize the pressure on the digestive system.

Festivals are meant to bring joy and happiness in our lives. A little care and precaution can go a long way in ensuring that we celebrate our festivals every year in the best of our health and spirit. Be watchful and mindful while planning your Diwali and celebrate the festival in its true essence.

Wishing you a happy & healthy Diwali!