Summertime Activities: Safety tips to Avoid a Trip to the ER

Ah, summertime!

Such an amazing and magical time of the year when you can enjoy the pool, long bike rides, trips to the beach… and the emergency room!

Yep. Summertime is the prime time of the year for the ER. Trauma doctors see more patients in this season than any other.

At the same time that the clocks change for daylight saving time, emergency rooms see an increase in cases of traumas and injuries.

When it comes to children, hospitals see an increase in bicycle-related and swimming and water-play injuries. For the adults, they see more lawn mower injuries, sunburns, and joint injuries.

We listed the most common summertime injuries with our safety tips to help you prevent these kinds of accidents and injuries.

Enjoy all that the summer has to offer…except for the Emergency Room!

Barbecue

Barbecue Safety tips

Besides having good meat, delicious sausages, and a cold beer, barbecuing often include having to deal with grills, open flame, and sharp objects.

Trauma units see plenty of bbq-related burns and cuts of varying severity during each summer.

Safety tip: make sure to use proper protective equipment, like oven mitts / BBQ gloves, and use tools specifically for the grill or barbecue since they have longer handles and keep your hands and arms away from the heat.

Sunburns

summer sunburn

We get it! Everybody waited for so long and now you just want to enjoy the weather, stay under the sun and get a little tan.

However, most part of people just seems to forget about safety and protecting themselves from the sun, and severe sunburn and heatstroke can quickly land you in the emergency room.

While spending some time in the sun and heat is fine, being exposed for too long can have serious consequences in summertime!.

Safety tip: stay cool! 😉 During the summertime this is definitely hard to do, but it’s a must.

If you know you’re going to be outdoors for a long period of time, for leisure or work, remember to wear lightweight clothing that will protect you from the harmful rays of the sun, and wear sunscreen.

Also, don’t forget your face and ears, and make sure you wear a hat and sunglasses to protect your scalp and eyes since they can be injured by the sun too!

When possible, take breaks in the shade or in an air-conditioned space to cool off.

Dehydration

Summetime dehydration

ER units see plenty of patients suffering the effects of dehydration each summertime. So pay attention to the early symptoms of dehydration so you can avoid a trip to the ER:

  • Dry mouth
  • Tired or sleepy
  • Headache
  • Dry skin
  • Dizziness

Safety tip: hydrate!

Just as important as sun protection, you also need to make sure to protect your body from the heat from the inside out.

Don’t wait until you’re thirsty because that means your body is already experiencing the beginnings of dehydration. Drink often to ensure that your body is functioning at its best.

Bicycling-related injuries

bicycling summertime Safety tips

Usually, bicycle-related accidents happen due to high speed and user negligence. The majority of the injuries are in the extremities, such as arm and wrist fractures and head injuries.

Safety tip: always use safety gear or at least wear a helmet.

Also, before rousing your bike from hibernation, make sure the brakes and tires are in good working order.

Swimming injuries

Summetime Swimming injuries

If you think this is restricted to children, think again: adults also account for a great number of fatalities or injuries in the summer months.

Besides drownings, diving injuries numbers also present a spike. They may not result in death, but they can be nearly as catastrophic.

Safety tip: be sure of your skills as a swimmer and don’t underestimate the sea.

The Red Cross also has a list of swimming safety tips that you can take a look at. Here are some of them:

  • Always swim with a buddy.
  • Swim only in areas that have a lifeguard.
  • Stay out of the water when you are very tired, very cold, or overheated.
  • Follow all swimming rules posted at the swimming area.

Trampoline trauma

trampoline trauma summertime Safety tips

Who doesn’t like to keep bouncing up and down on a trampoline? Kids from 8 to 80 love a trampoline!

Basically operating as a “particle collider” when you have more than one person jumping up and down, the risk escalates: concussions, sprains, and occasional broken bones are the results.

Usually, the traumas are a result of an attempt for gymnastic exercises or stunts, such as somersaults or flips.

Safety tip: besides avoiding acrobatic maneuvers on the trampoline, make sure that it’s safe to use.

You can cover the springs and edges of the trampoline with padding so no one can slip and fall through the space between the springs.

To prevent anyone from falling off the trampoline entirely, you can install a safety enclosure net around the trampoline.

Taking those 2 measures, you are able to tackle the most common injuries related to trampolines.

The Nationwide website offers a complete list of trampoline safety rules. Check it out.

Joint and muscle injuries

Summetime hiking
hiking safety tips

When the sun shines and the temperature rises, everyone is outdoors.

You have been dreaming about hiking, cycling, water-skiing, or ___________ (fill in the blank with your favorite activity) for ages. All you want to do is get outside on the weekends and enjoy the season.

The problem with the “weekend warriors” is that they come unprepared but with lots of energy. They push their bodies to limits that they are not used to.

Pulled muscles, sprains, stiffness, and sore joints are just a handful of issues we can all run into after a period of being more sedentary.

The heat can also pose potential health risks.

Safety tip: joint and muscle injuries can often be prevented with adequate preparation and a sprinkle of caution. Here are a few tips:

  • Exercise at least every other day, week in, week out, to keep your body in shape for your weekend fun.
  • Set realistic goals for yourself: if you haven’t done a sport or exercise for years, don’t expect to be able to start right back at the level where you left off
  • Warm-up before doing your activity
  • Mix it up: focusing on just one activity can overstrain certain parts of your body.
  • Try cross-training, like swimming and jogging, or cycling and basketball.
  • Listen to your body: if it hurts, back off a bit or take a break.

Do you have a specific summer safety tip that we didn’t cover? Please share your #safetyhack with all of us.

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