Holi 2019 is just around the corner and people across the country are gearing up for it. E-commerce sites, local shops, grocery stores and more are having flash sales on colours, pichkaris and other miscellaneous stuff that you’ll need to celebrate Holi with aplomb! Each year, post the celebrations, there’s an invariable rise in the number of people who contract skin rashes, infected eyes, breathing troubles and more. Animals who happen to be around celebrations too end up with health problems. And that means that the colours we use, the ways in which we celebrate and the overall approach probably needs a revision. To make sure that the celebrations don’t may way for unpleasantness, it is imperative that we adopt some measures for a safe and healthy Holi.
Here are some ways in which you can ensure the safety of yourself and those around you.
1. Use Skin-Safe Colors
Not all synthetic colours are dangerous, not all natural colours are safe. And since we can’t tell whether they are safe without using them first, we may have to resort to a hard technique. Which is making your own colours. Beetroot juice mixed with water, turmeric powder etc are great alternatives. These two are in fact great for your skin!
Now, you can also use skip the use of colours altogether. Remember the Ambani wedding last year? They had a Holi of sorts with flowers! As long as you are ready to clean up the crushed flowers and floral waste afterwards, it should be a safe albeit expensive alternative.
2. Use Water Balloons Only
Don’t make do with normal balloons by filling them with colour. Those rubber balloons are quite painful and can cause bruises, especially on young kids. Several cases of such injuries have been reported, mostly on young kids and animals. In fact, the whole idea of throwing a balloon full of colour at someone sounds a little dangerous. Either we can avoid this habit altogether or we can throw it with minimal force.
3. Never Aim For Easily Injured Body Parts
Eyes, ears, mouth – dry and liquid colours are not great for these organs. Rashes, allergic reactions, bruises and much more could result from throwing colours, water balloons or liquids at high force. The spirit of Holi turns sour very quickly if someone in the group is down sick. Let’s all remember that.
4. Spare The Animals Please
Unless an animal walks up to you and tells you to smear colour on it, refrain from including them in your wild celebrations. The colour irritates their nasal passages, their skin gets painful rashes that even bleed and the balloons just cause welts and bruises. Some animals go blind when the dry powder irritates their eyes. None of this is pleasant for them.
And even after the celebrations are over, the bugs in the grass, the birds, the animals on the road that scavenge for food end up eating colour stained stuff and sometimes even plastic bits. Not great either.
5. Stay Away From The Streets If Possible
No. of motor vehicle collisions that happen when kids run around the streets, half blinded by colour in their eyes is noteworthy. Road accidents are the worst kinds of casualties and very often, lives are lost before even hospital gates are reached.
Find an open space, away from traffic, away from animals and gather a bunch of people who don’t mind being dunked in colour and then get going.
6. Children Should Be Supervised
The person writing this article strictly encourages sparing children under 10 from all the celebrations. But that’s a personal opinion. If you must include the tiny humans, make sure that their eyes, ears and mouth aren’t smeared with colour. Make sure they wear jeans/denim pants, thick clothing essentially and stick to clothes that provide maximum coverage. Childrens’ skin is super sensitive and often, they take much longer to recover from rashes. Let’s not put them through that.
7. Stay Safe When Travelling
If you aren’t a fan of all the colourful celebrations, stay in. But if you do have to go out, keep the windows of your vehicle tightly shut. In the excitement, people might start behaving erratically and smear colours on random passersby. They may even fling colours into the insides of vehicles passing by. If you’re on a two-wheeler, we hope you don’t get annoyed too much.
8. Skip The Overindulgence
Too much bhang isn’t great for festive spirits. Avoid too much of anything that could befuddle you, alcohol should definitely be consumed with caution. Try not eating too many snacks as well. You’ll have difficulty the next day if you let yourself go. Don’t do things that you might repent later. Enjoying is great but make sure that you always have your health and wellbeing and that of others in the back of your mind always.
Likewise, spending too much on celebrations too seems unnecessary. If you have money to spare, share some with the underprivileged and include them in the festivities as well.
9. Don’t Hesitate To Seek Medical Attention
Eyes itching like crazy? Too much liquid in your ears? GET HELP. In fact stock up on some anti-inflammatory medicines, anti-histamines and remedies any known conditions that you have. Likewise, if watch out for signs of worsening health in members of your group as well. Lung infections are pretty common after Holi celebrations so you can choose to wear a mask if you want to.
10. No Running
This seems like a silly point to add to this list. But wet surfaces and fast-moving humans are terrible combinations. Head injuries, broken bones, broken teeth etc are not uncommon if you happen to slip and fall on a wet floor. So as simple as it may seem, avoid running or putting others in situations where they may attempt to run. So no chasing, no running. Wear shoes with a good grip and try to stay dry.
We Aren’t Souring The Spirit. We Just Want You To Stay Safe
Please don’t see this as a write up to dampen your spirits. We love Holi, it is something that we look forward with excitement. But with each year, the number of accidents resulting from celebrations that go out of control is rising. And there are always ways to upgrade our existing traditions with fun, safe and cleaner ones that leave less of a footprint on our nature.
Have fun, everyone! Please stay safe. We hope you have a wonderful Holi this year!