8 Riskiest Things We Do Everyday
If you don't wrestle alligators for a living or spend your free time doing daredevil stunts, you probably think you live a relatively low-risk existence. Perhaps an average morning consists of hitting the snooze button, taking a warm shower, eating a quick breakfast, and then driving to work.
So you might be surprised to learn how many people are injured doing these same seemingly innocuous tasks. What's more, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more people are injured at home than anywhere else. Here, a rundown of the riskiest things we do everyday.
1. Get out of bed.
Who knew the first thing you do every day is so dangerous? About 130 people a year are killed by falling out of bed. In addition, you have a 1 in 20,000 chance of getting out of bed, falling, and fracturing your skull so badly that it kills you.
Falling is the leading cause of death caused by injuries and is the biggest reason that older adults end up in the emergency room. About 16,000 people a year die from fall-related injuries, according to the CDC. To help reduce the risk of falling in the shower, place rubber mats on the bottom of the tub, and install a sturdy bar to hold onto.
3. Have sex.
Chances are, you don't have sex every day, but when you do, you're probably not thinking about whether it could kill you. Statistics show that people with risk factors for heart disease are twice as likely to suffer a heart attack during sex (or an hour after sex) as those who had not had sex. However, that risk is still very low—findings published in the Journal of the American Medical Association put the risk of sex causing a heart attack at 2 in a million, while the regular risk of heart attack stands at 1 in a million.
Think you're not at risk because you don't drive very far? You may be surprised at how close to home accidents occur. According to auto insurer Progressive, 52 percent of all accidents occur 5 miles or less from home, and 23 percent occur within a mile of home.
Whether you're preparing a meal indoors or out, cooking can be hazardous to your health. For example, about 2,000 people worldwide are injured each year trying to pry apart frozen foods. In the U.S., another 30 people are injured as result of gas grill fires or explosions, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Congratulations, you've survived the food preparation—but will you make it through the meal? Nearly 5,000 people a year may die due to foodborne illnesses, according to the CDC. An additional 76 million cases of food poisoning will occur, mostly as a result of eating food contaminated with bacteria or viruses.
7. Do yard work.
Among adults 65 and older, an injury is most likely to occur while working around the yard, according to the CDC. Mowing the lawn is a particularly dangerous activity. One study found that nearly 80,000 people end up in the hospital each year to be treated for lawn mower-related injuries.
8. Go to work.
For every 100,000 employees, about four of them will be killed in a work-related fatality, according to data from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics. Workers most at risk include farmers, fishermen, forestry workers, truck drivers, and construction workers.
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The material on the QualityHealth Web site is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by a physician or other qualified health provider. See additional information.