Health Plus: Yard safety - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Health Plus: Yard safety

Before you weed your flower bed or till your garden again, better hear the facts about disease risks in everyday yardwork.

In Health Plus, an avid outdoorsman shares his concerns about playing in the dirt.

Richard Pollitt knows nature.

The retired Waverly biology teacher leads narrative hikes in Alaska.

But the 70-year-old is worried about more than moose when he's outdoors.

"Be careful with tools because it's easy to cut yourself or get a puncture wound just being careless," he says.

At Covenant Clinic in Waverly, Dr. Arla McVicker treats a lot of patients with yard accidents.

"We commonly see infections in the skin from etiehr a scratch that they've gotten while they're gardening or something they had already but then some bacteria gets in it when they put their hands in the soil," she says.

She says precautions need to be taken and be taken seriously.

Like wearing gloves, washing hands and getting up-to-date on your tetanus shot--every 10 years.

"I've seen people come in and something just happened yesterday and today they need to have IV antibiotics, they need to go to the hospital. Some cases can get so serious that they need to have surgery. So these things can get out of hand pretty quickly."

Richard always tries to be aware of his surroundings whether in Iowa or Alaska.

"If you're working in the garden you've got to be aware of cuts.  If I'm down by the river, I'm close to the timber. I've got to worry about ticks."

This from a guy who spends up to seven hours outside every day.



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