"If you'll be driving, exercise common sense and don't drink and drive," says Robert Dickinson, M.D., Managing Physician of the Executive Health Assessment Program at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. "Designate a trusted non-drinking driver before getting into your car."
If this isn't feasible and taking a cab is unappealing, Dr. Dickinson suggests spending the night at a friend's place or hotel to avoid getting behind the wheel in an inebriated condition.
"If you're hosting a party you won't have to worry about travel, but be careful not to over-serve your guests," he says. "You could be contributing to their having a driving mishap after they leave."
Dr. Dickinson says that although fireworks can create exciting visual effects, there are some areas where consumer fireworks are not permitted.
"If you do use fireworks, never let children light them," he warns. "If misused, fireworks can cause serious burns and eye injuries. Be sure to keep a bucket of water nearby in case of a fire. If a pyrotechnic fizzles out, don't touch or attempt to relight; instead, pour water over it."
He reminds adults that drinking alcohol while using fireworks is dangerous.
"New Year's Eve is a time to enjoy family and friends. Do your part to make it safer for yourself and those around you," concludes Dr. Dickinson, who cares for patients in the Mavis and Mary Kelsey Specialty Suite at Kelsey-Seybold's Main Campus clinic located near the Texas Medical Center.