April fools safety

By April 1, 2017health
colorful "April Fools Day" text

Every year on April 1 people gather all of their clever practical jokes and aim them towards the ones they love. This is not only acceptable, its appreciated. While its supposed to be all fun and games there is always the April fools prank that goes horribly wrong.  Last year there was a giant spike in emergency room visits on April 1st with over 400,000 injuries related to pranks.

According to legend, April Fools’ Day began in the year 1582, when Pope Gregory XIII (after whom the Gregorian calendar is named) moved the start of the new year from the end of March to the beginning of January. The change was made public, but not everyone got the memo, and those who didn’t and thus continued to celebrate New Year’s Day on April 1 were laughed at. Because they were seen as foolish, they were called April Fools.

More than 400 years later things have escalated. Unfortunately the whoopy cushion has been replaced with a real life, injury causing version of slapstick comedy. Bruises, stitches, and fractures are not the ideal outcome of a prank.

What to avoid in your April fools prank

  • Don’t place pranks at the top of stairs – Never ever plan a surprise prank at the top of a staircase. A person walking on the stairs could fall as a result of being shocked or startled.
  • Avoid using water in your pranks, especially if spills will make the ground slippery –  Slippery floors and pranks don’t mix because they will likely team up to cause a serious slip and fall accident.
  • Never play pranks on someone who is carrying heavy objects or who is holding something sharp, like scissors or a knife – This can lead to serious injuries that will require a trip to the hospital.
  • Never play a prank on the driver of a vehicle. While your intentions may be to have good fun, the driver of any motor vehicle needs to be able to focus on the road, and a distraction like a prank in their car could cause them to be involved in a collision.
  • Avoid all types of pranks that could logically cause another person harm. Never play a prank when you think, “It will only hurt them a little.”

Benefits of good ol fashioned humor – Laughter IS the best medicine

There are many health benefits from laughing.  Laughter is an antidote to stress and pain. It can also improve your over all health!

There are physical benefits from laughter that you may not be aware of.

  • Laughter relaxes the whole body – after a good belly laugh, your muscles are left relaxed for almost 45 minutes.
  • Laugher improves your immune system – stress hormones are decrease and immune cells increase when laughing. This will help improve your body’s ability to fight off diseases.
  • Laughter releases endorphins – the natural, fell-good chemicals are releases while laughing, this can help with pain relief.
  • Laughter strengthens the heart – blood vessel function and blood flow are improved from laughing.

Laughter is contagious. If your April Fools joke on someone is done in a public place, just tell him or her it was so that you could help improve the health of as many people as possible today.