Spring cleaning time: the outside edition

It's inevitable every year: Once we start spending more time outdoors, those nagging home repairs float to the top of the to-do list.

Whether it's simple yard work or extensive pruning, these tips will help keep you safe while you work.

• Always wear goggles to protect your eyes from flying objects.

• Wear long pants, long sleeves and closed-toe shoes if you're working with a mower or weed whacker.

• Clear the yard of debris before you start. That stray twig or rock can smart when a mower blade or weed whacker string sends it flying.

• Don't mow on a steep hill

• If your lawnmower has thrown a piece of debris and you receive a cut, have it checked out. You may have a foreign object under your skin.

• Don't reach underneath a lawnmower unless you are absolutely sure it is turned off.

• Always inspect your equipment before using it to ensure that it is proper working condition.

• Sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat will help protect you from the heat and sunburn.

• Mornings and evenings, when it's cooler, are the best times for outdoor work.

• A bandana or facemask will help filter the air if you suffer from allergies.

• For work overhead, first check your ladder to make sure it's in good repair. Position it on level ground and away from power lines. If you're using an A-frame, make sure it's locked into place.

• Make sure you drink enough. Liquids with caffeine, alcohol or lots of sugar actually work against you – water is best. Doctors recommend three or four quarts a day if you're going to be out in the heat.

And should something go awry anyway, Doctors Care locations offer convenient weekend and evening hours so you can be on the mend as quickly as possible.