Summertime means everyone is outside… It also means that many more people will find themselves getting injured. To help you get the most out of the great weather, here are some tips on preventing and treating some of the most common injuries of the summertime.
Many injuries occur on playgrounds, while playing sports, riding bicycles or even using scooters. ALWAYS use protective equipment, especially helmets, at all times to prevent concussions and more serious injuries. Remember, “ice is nice“ for the first step in treating most injuries.
Mosquitoes can carry the West Nile Virus and ticks can carry Lyme disease, two very serious (and potentially deadly) diseases. When you are outdoors in the early morning or after dusk, try covering up with light, long-sleeved shirts and pants. Always use insect repellant on exposed skin.
Heat rashes erupt in the skin in hot and humid weather. They are usually very itchy and appear as small bumps or blisters on your upper chest or any other parts of your body. Staying close to the air conditioner and wearing breathable clothing will reduce sweating. Any serious rashes should be checked by a doctor, and if shortness of breath or difficulty breathing occurs, call 911 right away.
Whether it is at the beach, pool, lake, or out on a boat, everyone should remember to always use “common sense” around water. Children should be taught to swim at an early age and always use approved floatation devices when in the water. Parents and caregivers should practice “touch supervision,” meaning they should always be able to reach a child in the water.
Dehydration occurs when your body loses more fluid than you take in, and high temperatures affect it even more. Dehydration can lead to many health problems, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Stay hydrated by drinking lots of cool water, even when you are not feeling thirsty.
You can get burned not only from the sun, but also from campfires, fireworks, hot foods and water. Most burns require immediate application of cold water. Place the burned area under cold water and let it get very cold. Do not apply ice directly to burned skin without water, and do not apply ointments until the skin temperature is cold enough. Get immediate medical attention for any eye burns, or for those that are larger than a quarter in size or in sensitive areas.
Dr. Ernest Patti