Health risks can be present anywhere, sometimes in places where you don’t even expect them. You don’t have to walk around like a hypochondriac, worried about every possible germ that might infect you. At the same time, it’s prudent to be conscious of potential risks so you can take the appropriate precautions. The following are five everyday health risks of which you should be aware.

Sun Exposure

While a certain amount of sunlight is good for your health, there are definite risks associated with overexposure. Sunburn is the most obvious health risk presented by the sun, but you also have to be concerned about skin cancer. When you know you’re going to be outdoors for extended periods, always wear sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.

Excessive Alcohol Consumption

While light alcohol consumption is not a health risk for most people and may even have certain benefits, excessive drinking can lead to many problems. Immediate risks include dangers while driving or using machinery. Longer term risks include damage to the liver and heart. People are not always aware of these risks when they drink socially. You should always be aware of your level of alcohol consumption and keep it to one or two drinks per day at most.

Sleep Deprivation

Lack of sleep is a widespread problem today. If you’re burning the candle at both ends, you increase your risk of many health problems. Sleep deprivation has been linked with stress, depression, obesity and high blood pressure. Aside from this, it’s just as dangerous to drive when tired as it is to drive drunk. The average person needs at least seven hours of sleep per night to maintain optimum health.

Public Transportation

If you take buses, trains or any type of public transportation, you should be aware of certain health risks. When you’re surrounded by many people, there is always the possibility of picking up germs and bugs. You should always wash your hands thoroughly after using public transportation. If you notice someone who is coughing or sneezing, keep your distance as much as possible. Public transportation risks also involve the ever-present danger, especially on trains, of a collision or derailment occurring. An expert with Steven P. Roberts says most trains lack restraint systems on every seat, which puts passengers at risk of injury if an accident occurs. If you ride on trains regularly, make sure you take all possible measures to ensure your own safety in the event of a derailment, collision, or other accident.

Secondhand Smoke

The dangers of smoking are widely known. However, even secondhand smoke presents many serious health risks. Secondhand smoke can contribute to heart disease, lung cancer and other illnesses. While you can’t always eliminate your exposure to smoke, you should always keep as far away as possible from people who are smoking.

These are some of the health risks that you may face in everyday life. It’s not possible to completely eliminate every possible threat to your health. You can, however, taking sensible precautions to minimize the dangers. You can monitor your own actions and keep your distance from people and situations that are a risk to your health.

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