Christmas is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year and yet it can end up being a very tense time of year. The combination of stress, over exertion and an insatiable need to please everyone, can potentially leave you more likely to injure yourself or have an accident.

This prompted the team to take a look at some common Christmas mishaps and how best to avoid them.

Christmas eve

Too merry on the festive cheer

The festive time of year can mean getting into the festive spirit by enjoying an alcoholic beverage a little too often or with a little too much gusto. This can lead to an inevitable hangover, made all the worse if you have young children waking up extra early to see what Father Christmas has delivered.

It can be very easy to get carried away, especially when celebrations are in full swing. If you want to avoid feelings of regret in the morning, and the headache that comes with it, try and pace yourself, drink water in between drinks and make sure that you have eaten properly.

Loft excursion back injury

The build up to Christmas can be extremely busy and leave you with little time to put all your festive decorations up. This can lead to a Christmas Eve dash into the loft for supplies. But don’t be tempted to carry your haul all in one go or by yourself, as you could end up with more than you bargained for. Carrying boxes and bags whilst in a cramped space and twisting to position yourself on the loft ladders is a recipe for a pulled back muscle.

Instead of risking an accident ask someone to help you or make several trips. Failing that tell your friends and family that you’re going for the minimal look this year.

Pine needle accident

Real Christmas trees look impressive and bring a seasonal scent into homes. However, it’s important to take care when adjusting your baubles on Christmas eve, as pine needle injuries can be painful.

Different types of trees have different types of needles. Some trees may be more likely to inflict a painful spike injury than others. The traditional Norway spruce, favoured by many British families, has sharp spiky needles. You might be best wearing gardening gloves to protect your fingers when decorating this type of Christmas tree.

Last minute shopping anxiety

Last minute shopping can lead to battling with crowds of stressed-out shoppers. Your quest to find the perfect gift could even cause feelings of anxiety. Your heart rate might increase and you might have a churning feeling in your stomach causing you to need to make unscheduled trips to the toilet.

If you have to head out to pick up some last minute presents try and stay calm. Make a list of the gifts you need and the shops you want to visit, as doing so might save you from wandering aimlessly. Take a bottle of water and some healthy snacks to keep your energy levels up and dehydration at bay.

Gift wrapping paper cut

Present wrapping under pressure can lead to eye-wateringly painful paper cuts. How a minor injury can inflict such pain is one of life’s greatest mysteries.

If you want to avoid paper cuts you could plan ahead and get all your presents gift wrapped at the point of purchase. Otherwise you could opt for festive bags or boxes that require minimal contact with sharp paper edges.

Christmas day

Managing mental health

The festive period and Christmas day in particular can come with a pressure to feel happy and positive. However, some people may struggle to put on a brave face whilst they are battling with sadness. Christmas can be a time of year for nostalgia and for remembering those who are no longer here to celebrate with us.

Our mental health is extremely important therefore if you don’t feel like taking part in the Christmas festivities, and instead want to use the time for relaxation and reflection, then don’t be ashamed to turn down offers of invitations. If you feel you are struggling with your mental health then there are services that man phone lines throughout the Christmas period.

Slipping on ice

Dreaming of a white Christmas might make for a picture perfect backdrop but snow and ice can be difficult to navigate for many members of the population, including the elderly and infirm. Wrist and hip fractures are some of the most common fractures that occur due to falling on ice or snow and can be troublesome to repair.

If icy weather is forecast you should make sure you are prepared for the conditions before you head out. Dig out a sturdy pair of walking boots. Walk slowly, with purpose and use small movements to ensure that your weight is distributed equally between your feet.

Christmas dinner dangers

Agreeing to cook the Christmas dinner is a big task in itself and is one that will almost certainly cause its share of arguments and tension. The pressure of delivering the perfect Christmas dinner may mean that you are more likely to have an accident, such as burning your hand on the hob or oven or cutting your finger when peeling a mountain of potatoes.

The key to a smooth christmas dinner is preparation. Make sure that you have a clear idea of the timings so that you don’t need to rush, this should help you keep your calm and avoid falling foul of any painful mistakes.

Food allergy hazards

Seasonal Christmas food can be deliciously decadent and all too tempting. This can potentially prove problematic if you have a food allergy or intolerance. Accidentally ingesting nuts or shellfish, when you have a nut or shellfish allergy, can result in a nasty reaction that could send you to your nearest accident and emergency department.

As frustrating as it might be, make sure that you check and re-check all food labels and packaging. Speak to your host to see if they have taken any precautions when making food items at home. You should feel confident and safe when you are eating at all times of year.

Hearty food and heartburn

The food and drink that is usually available on Christmas day can unfortunately create the perfect environment for heartburn to rear its ugly head. Fatty foods, alcohol and chocolate can all trigger symptoms of acid reflux.

If you are prone to heartburn then you might want to avoid any specific foods or drinks that trigger it. Don’t overface yourself, take a small plate of food and remember it is highly likely that there will be leftovers tomorrow (and the day after). Head out for an after-dinner walk to promote efficient digestion.

Boxing day

Seasonal holiday hangover

The joy of Christmas day might encourage excessive alcohol consumption which can contribute to a holiday hangover on Boxing day. You might experience a headache, nausea and vomiting, muscle aches, dry mouth or shakiness. These unpleasant symptoms can leave you questioning why you drank so much the night before.

If you are feeling less than fresh on boxing day then you need to rehydrate to help your body restore its usual equilibrium. Painkillers can alleviate headaches and you should try and eat something to settle your stomach and stop any muscle shakes.

Sales stress

The lure of the Boxing Day sales, and the chance to save some pennies, is enough to have some people heading off to their nearest shopping centre bright and early.

If you do decide to head to the sales you’re likely to encounter a high number of stressed out shoppers all vying for the best deal, so you need to keep your cool. If you have a specific sale item in mind then head for that first so that you stand more chance of succeeding.

Festive fatigue

Boxing day can often be used as a day to recover from the excesses of the day before. At this point in the festive calendar you might be feeling run down; as the late nights, food and drink excesses and stress begin to take their toll.

Try and get back on track as soon as possible. Make sure you return to eating a healthy and varied diet that includes plenty of fruit and vegetables. Cut back on your sugar and alcohol consumption. Reinstall your usual nighttime routine and make sure that you are getting enough sleep.

Sugar overload

Christmas can become quite the sugar-fest. Chocolate on offer in between every meal, fizzy drinks often favoured over water and the desserts tend to be sticky and unctuous. Add all this sugar together and you could soon be feeling a little furry in the mouth department. Large amounts of sugar can cause a build up on the teeth and tongue that makes them feel furry.

Try to break your day up with some non-sugary drinks such as water, use a paper straw when drinking sugary cocktails if possible and make sure you stick to your routine of brushing your teeth twice a day.

Christmas should be a time of year where everyone can enjoy the festivities safely and in a way that makes them feel comfortable. Take your time to soak up the atmosphere, try not to rush and keep stress levels to a minimum. Remember that Christmas can be perfect even when it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles.