Being a dad is hard work as any father will tell you, but it can also be dangerous work! The average parent sustains 22 injuries per year. Let’s take a look at a couple of common parenting injuries and how we can avoid or treat them…
When I think about the most painful injuries I could sustain in my living room, the thought of stepping on a Lego sticks out as the worst. Small toys underfoot can cause pain, cuts and bruises, and accidental falls. Luckily avoiding these is as easy as cleaning up (easier said than done usually). Consider an easy option such as a toy mat that keeps small pieces from going everywhere and can slide out of the way or fold up when not in use. For larger toys, a laundry basket works great for a quick pick-up and easy transportation. If you just can’t avoid the mess, make sure you don’t walk through the room in the dark to avoid any surprises underfoot.
This category of injuries is a varied as the sports our dads teach us to play. Whether it’s tossing a ball in the backyard to help your little one start JR softball or running around the field with your teenager trying to keep up with her soccer drills, dads play lots of sports and that leaves them open to lots of injuries. Luckily, there are a few general rules of thumb that will help you avoid injury no matter what you happen to be doing. First, remember you aren’t that age anymore and sometimes you may not be able to keep up. No worries, your kids understand and are probably just glad you’re helping anyways. Second, be prepared. Stretching before exercising is crucial, as is wearing the right equipment for it. If your kid needs special basketball shoes to support his ankles as he jumps for a 3-pointer, maybe you should wear some too. Using common sense can be an easy way for dads to avoid a sports injury and make sure they can keep playing with their kids for years to come.
You may be thinking my kids are all grown up so I don’t have to worry about that stuff, right? Wrong. Aging can do any number of things to our health, especially after the active years of raising kids. Maybe those years left you with a constant pain in your heels or a stress fracture you used to write off as the pain of being a parent. Take care of these issues now. Taking care of existing problems now will help lessen the number of issues aging can bring on. As we say, healthy feet and ankles are the foundation of an active lifestyle. If you want to be sure you can keep up with your grown kids for years to come, it’s a good time to start taking care of your feet now.
Being a dad can certainly have its pains, but your kids appreciate every minute of it…or at least they probably will when they get older and look back on it. Give your father a big hug this Sunday and make sure you don’t step on his toes or knock his noggin while you’re doing it. Happy Father’s Day!