Entries in New Year's Day (5)


Many Smokers Will Have a Hard Time Lighting Up on New Year's Day

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The new year is bringing in a new set of restrictions for smokers.

Starting on Jan. 1, a number of towns and workplaces across the country are enacting new rules that will make it harder for people to find a spot to light up.

The Wall Street Journal reports that beginning on Tuesday, workers at 3M's headquarters in Saint Paul, Minn., may have to drive a quarter of a mile to a strip mall parking lot to have a cigarette because smoking will be banned everywhere on the corporate campus.

The newspaper says that state workers in Delaware also will have to go hunting for a place to smoke on New Year's Day, as all state property -- indoor and outdoor -- becomes smoke-free.  The new rule in Delaware applies not only to tobacco products, but also to electronic cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and hookahs, according to the Journal.

Similar efforts are being discussed by officials from Maine to California as governments and businesses aim to protect non-smokers from secondhand smoke, the Journal says.  

The new rules come as fewer people are lighting up.  The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the number of U.S. adults who smoke dropped to 19 percent in 2011.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


New Year Celebrations: Champagne Bottle Safety

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- December 31st is when millions of us ring in the new year with a champagne toast. But all those flying champagne corks could be hazardous to your eyesight. It may surprise you to know that a champagne cork can clock fifty miles per hour as it bursts from the bottle. That's powerful enough to shatter glass --  and to cause permanent eye injury.
So you don't uncork a visit to the emergency room, here are some last-minute safety tips from ophthalmology experts before your New Year celebration.      

  • Make sure sparkling wine is no warmer than 45 degrees fahrenheit. The cork in a warm bottle is more likely to pop suddenly.
  • Don't shake the bottle -- that increases the pressure inside.
  • Open the bottle by holding down the cork with your palm while twisting open the wire hood.
  • Point the bottle away from people and put a towel over the bottletop and grasp the cork.
  • Slowly and firmly twist the bottle while holding the cork, then press downward slightly to control the cork just as it pops free.

Then, you can watch all the new years celebrations with your eyes safe and sound.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


How Long Is the Perfect New Year's Kiss?

Comstock/Thinkstock(SAN DIEGO) -- When you kiss 2011 goodbye at the stroke of midnight this Saturday, how long will your New Year’s kiss last?

The dating website It’sJustLunch surveyed over 500 singles and asked, “How long is the perfect New Year’s Kiss?”  Here are the results:

-- If you’re kissing someone you just met at a party, 61 percent of the respondents said “seven seconds” is long enough.

-- If you're at the party with someone you’ve been dating for at least three months, 23 percent said, “long enough to need to get a room."  Nineteen percent of respondents said the kiss should last “12 seconds.”

-- When it comes to bringing in the new year at home, 58 percent of those polled agreed their ideal smooch would be “long enough to go way beyond kissing.”

As for the preferred kissing technique for a public smooch:

-- 36 percent chose kissing with an “open mouth and tongue.”
-- 34 percent picked “open mouth and no tongue.”
-- 30 percent chose a “closed mouth.”

Sixty-two percent of those surveyed said if their New Year’s kiss was in a public place, they’d make it “shorter, subtler and more reserved.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Ring in the New Year with Cheer, Not a Hangover

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Most people who consume alcohol have had a hangover at least once in their lives.  And some of those people raising their glasses on New Year's Eve may be clutching their heads and bellies on Jan. 1.

Key symptoms of a hangover include a usually throbbing headache, nausea, diarrhea, excessive fatigue, and extreme thirst and dehydration.  The liver breaks down alcohol into a byproduct called acetaldehyde, which is more toxic to the body than the alcohol itself, and is the reason for the post-drinking side effects.

But, as many people have noticed, every person reacts differently to alcohol.  Some people have a few sips of alcohol and feel terrible the next day, while others can consume drink after drink into the wee hours of the morning and feel great.

That's because it's not just the amount of alcohol that goes into the body that influences the hangover.  Age, genetics, medications, diet, immune systems, weight, and gender all can come into play.

If you want to avoid a hangover, doctors say, don't drink.  But, if the booze already is flowing, here are a few things drinkers can do to help make the morning after more tolerable:

-- Drink slowly and eat foods high in fat to help slow the absorption of alcohol.

-- Avoid carbonation, which can increase the absorption of alcohol.

-- Drink water or juice in between drinks.

If the hangover has already arrived, doctors advise people to sleep it off.  Otherwise, doctors say to replenish the body by drinking a lot of fluids and be sure to eat fructose-containing foods like tomatoes, oranges, honey, and bananas.´╗┐

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Holiday Hangover: Alcohol Linked to SIDS Deaths

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(OAKLAND, Calif.) -- The New Year's Day hangover can be deadly for caregivers who have had a night of heavy drinking and awake to find a lifeless baby in the crib.

More than 2,500 babies a year die from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and now researchers now say there may be an association between those deaths and alcohol.

A University of California study published this month in the journal Addiction found a 33-percent spike in SIDS deaths on Jan. 1.

Alcohol consumption is also at an all-time high during the holidays.

The study, conducted by sociologist David Phillips, concluded that alcohol was a risk factor for SIDS, although it is unclear whether alcohol is an independent risk or occurs only in conjunction with other known risks, such as co-sleeping with the baby.

It concludes that alcohol "impairs parental capacity" and therefore can put a child at risk.

Scientists took into account the normal increase in SIDS deaths that are reported during the winter months, probably because of colds and respiratory infections, as well as using coverings in the crib for warmth.

The study looked at 129,090 SIDS cases from 1973 to 2006 and also tracked alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents among the general population. Both were at an all-time high on New Year's Day.

In addition, the study showed another rise in SIDS deaths right after April 20, a day celebrated by pot smokers and after July 4, also a time of heavy alcohol use. Babies of mothers who drink are also twice as likely to die of SIDS, according to the study.

"It's logical that when women are inebriated the attentiveness to the child is going to be reduced and the likelihood of getting a child in the situation where a parent puts them at risk would be there," said Dr. Michael Malloy, a neonatologist at University of Texas Medical Branch.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio´╗┐

ABC News Radio