Summer is the season to be outside! Most people enjoy outdoor activities during sunny weather. While warm days may be fun, they can also be harmful to your body. There are many injuries that may occur with sun exposure and excessive heat.
Heat exhaustion and heat strokes may occur when you have been exposed to the sun or an overheated environment.
dehydration (loss of salt and water)
Lie down in a cool place. Replace fluid and salt with high-sodium drinks and water. If the situation worsens, seek medical attention.
red, hot skin
convulsions/loss of consciousness
Immediate treatment is needed to cool the body down. Remove clothing and submerge your body in a cool tub. Medical attention is needed.
Sunburns are common. Pain, redness, and swelling often occur. Usually, sunburns heal within a week. The damaged layer of skin then peels off. However, sunburns can be very serious. Blisters may develop, along with severe pain. Extreme cases should be cared for under a doctor’s instructions.
Prevent sunburns by:
Avoiding tanning beds
Using a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher
Avoiding long exposure to the sun’s rays
Covering up sensitive, exposed areas of skin
Wearing a hat to shade your face
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer. Most instances are due to previous sun exposure. Cancer may develop on the hands, arms, face, or other areas of the body.
Basal Cell Carcinoma
Basal cell carcinoma is the most common skin cancer type. It grows at a slow pace and does not spread. Surgical removal will treat this type of cancer.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Squamous cell carcinoma grows more rapidly than basal cell and can also spread. Surgical removal and radiation are treatments normally used.
Malignant melanomas are the most deadly type of skin cancer. These spread quickly to all organs of the body. This tumor may be deadly.
Abrasions are very common during summer months. Bleeding usually does not occur. Clean the affected area with soap and water. Removing any particles that may be embedded in the skin. Cover with antibiotic ointment and a bandage.
Puncture wounds can occur from many different outside objects. The same treatment applied for abrasions should also be used for puncture wounds. A tetanus shot may be needed if immunizations are not up to date.
Staying safe in the summer months can be very difficult especially when there are many outdoor activities going on. Keep a first aid kit on hand at all times. Prevention is also a key factor in maintaining safety.