With any luck, a festive holiday season includes merriment, cheer and possibly some eggnog, but for emergency room doctors, the holidays can mean treating patients for some unusual holiday-related ailments.
Here's a few cautionary tales from the doctors who work on the frontlines of the holiday season.
Step Away From the Presents
Dr. Brahim Ardolic, chairman of emergency medicine at Staten Island University Hospital, said he has worked every holiday for two decades and says when it comes to new presents, it's the parents who should be extra cautious.
Every year, Ardolic said he's seen parents injured after being a little too excited about playing with a toy for their child.
Ardolic recalled treating a 50-year-old woman one year "who was fascinated by hoverboards."
"She stepped on it for 1 second and ended up with both feet above her head," Ardolic told ABC News. The hoverboard was also broken after it crashed into the wall.
"It was literally 15 minutes after the present was opened," Ardolic said, noting that the woman wasn't seriously injured but did have to stay in the emergency department for hours due to back spasms.
"Everyone from the family took turns visiting her and making fun of her," Ardolic said.
Beware the Bear Suit
Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, said one of his most memorable New Year's Eve stories happened when he first started in the emergency department. A woman was admitted for a complex ankle fracture and her caring fiance decided to cheer her up with a singing telegram dressed in a bear costume, Glatter said in an email.
"Unfortunately, the bear became dizzy -- apparently overheated in the costume, and ultimately required resuscitation for heat-related cramps," Glatter said. "The bear ultimately was not able to deliver the 'happy new year' singing telegram to the patient because he was now a patient himself."
While the song may have been aborted, the bear's work to cheer up the patient was reportedly finished. Both patients ended up having a laugh even when they were on gurney side by side, Glatter recalled.
Watch Out for the Nose
A busy house with little children, dogs and lots of tiny objects, can be a recipe for disaster, Ardolic said.
Every year, he said he expects to see at least a few children with a "foreign object" wedged in their nose.
One of his most memorable cases came when a dog had chewed through a strand of fake pearls that decorated the tree. A young child in the family had managed to get to the broken strand of pearls before the adults and had wedged one of them in her nose. When Ardolic saw her in the ER, he at first thought he could remove the pearl and be done with it.
"I'm looking and I decide to do a kid's neck X-ray," Ardolic said. "I see another bead and I do an x-ray of the kid's chest and she had swallowed about seven of them."
Ardolic said he expected the parents likely spent the next week or so fishing out the "pearls" from diapers.