The Stepping Strong Injury Prevention Program—an initiative of the Brigham’s Gillian Reny Stepping Strong Center for Trauma Innovation—has compiled a list of resources to help combat the risk of injury.
Poor mental health caused by stress and anxiety can make it difficult to manage our daily lives. Dealing with these emotions can be challenging, but there are healthy ways to cope. Here are some tips for managing stress and anxiety.
- Limit time spent reading, listening, or watching the news. While staying up-to-date on current events such as COVID-19 can be helpful, it can also contribute to a greater sense of stress and anxiety.
- Practice self-care
- Get between 6-9 hours of sleep a night
- Make time to unwind or practice meditation
- Exercise—take a walk, go on a run, do a home workout
- Eat healthy and balanced meals. Examples include myplate.gov and this Mediterranean diet website
- Speak to someone about your mental health. For instance, call a free and confidential warmline to talk to a trained peer who can help with mental health struggles
- Stay away from negative coping mechanisms such as alcohol, drugs, or smoking
- Suicide prevention resources
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255
- Samaritans Statewide Helpline: 877-870-4673
- The Trevor Project (for LGBTQ Young People): 800-850-8078
- Suicide Prevention Resource Center
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) Suicide Prevention Resources
- If you or someone you know is in immediate danger of harming themselves, call 911
During periods of increased stress and time spent at home, it is important to ensure safe storage of medications and firearms to protect you and your family from unintentional injury.
Safe Storage Tips
- Store your medications and/or firearms in a locked cabinet, safe, or container.
- Gun locks cause guns to be inoperable and can be used in addition to storing the guns in a locked container.
- Store your firearm ammunition separate from your gun and store guns unloaded.
Safe Storage Resources
- Project ChildSafe
- Protect your children: store & use medications safely: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Reduce access to means of suicide: Suicide Prevention Resource Center
- Massachusetts and Rhode Island Poison Control Center: 1-800-222-1222
For some, home may not be a safe place. Victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) may be stuck at home with their abuser and unable to connect with friends, family, or coworkers, making them at increased risk of violence in the home. The complexity of their situations may also be exacerbated by additional marginalization, such as financial insecurity, structural racism, and/or other forms of oppression and discrimination. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence at home, know you are not alone. Here are some resources to help.
- Selected Intimate Partner Violence Research Articles by Stepping Strong Innovator Award Recipient Bharti Khurana, MD
- Upper extremity fractures due to intimate partner violence versus accidental causes
- Injury Patterns and Associated Demographics of Intimate Partner Violence in Older Adults Presenting to U.S. Emergency Departments
- Addressing intimate partner violence during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond: how radiologists can make a difference
- Brigham and Women’s Hospital Resources:
- Passageway (Domestic Violence): 617-732-8753 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Violence Recovery Program (Community Violence): 617-721-6034 or email@example.com
- Boston Neighborhood Trauma Team (Community Violence): 617-431-0215
- Massachusetts State Resources:
- If you need to speak to someone immediately about sexual or domestic violence, call Safelink at 1-877-785-2020 or TTY 1-877-521-2601
- DPH Domestic Violence Programs
- Jane Doe Inc.
- The Network La Red
- Boston Area Rape Crisis Center: 800-841-8371
- Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence: 24/7 Multilingual Hotline: 617-338-2355
- National Resources:
Safe Driving Tips
- Slow down: Drive no faster than the designated speed limit
- Wear your seatbelt
- Drive sober
- Drive hands-free and undistracted
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are taking up walking or cycling as a means of exercise and getting outside. It is important to practice safe measures when walking or cycling.
Pedestrian Safety Tips
- Use crosswalks and sidewalks whenever possible
- Refrain from walking at non-daylight hours. If walking at night, make sure to wear light, visible clothing or reflectors so that you are more visible to cars
- Never assume a driver sees you
Cyclist Safety Tips
- Wear a helmet while riding
- Use a bike lane when possible
- Plan your route on less crowded roadways
- Ride a bike that works and fits you
- Ride hands-free and sober
Pedestrian/Cyclist Safety Resources
It is important to practice safety measures that keep you and your family safe in the home.
Home Safety Tips
- Falls Prevention
- Talk to your provider about having a falls risk assessment
- Do not rush to answer the phone
- Refrain from wearing non-slip footwear like slippers, sandals, or high heels
- Use your cane or walker instead of holding on to furniture for stability
- Make sure your hallways and stairs are well lit—place night lights and bedside lamps in rooms
- Tape all throw rugs to the floor
- Place rubbers mats in the bathtub to prevent slipping
- Make sure electrical cords are organized and out of the way
- Burn Prevention
- Install smoke alarms on every floor of your home, especially near sleeping areas. Check batteries every six months
- Develop and practice a fire escape plan
- Blow candles out before leaving the room or going to sleep
- Use safe cooking practices: never leave a stove unattended
- Have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen in case of an emergency
- Poison Prevention
- Store poisonous substances in a locked cabinet or up and away from children. These substances include medications, household cleaners, alcohol, etc.
- Keep all poisonous products in their original containers
- If you suspect a poisoning has occurred, call the National Poison Help Hotline at 1-800-222-1222 for guidance from poison control professionals