Summer is short-lived in Calgary and the rest of Canada. Kids and adults alike want to soak up every minute of fun in the sun and enjoy the season to its fullest. But sometimes, with this excitement, we forget that injury can lurk in our favourite summer activities. A bump or a bruise is nothing to sweat, but you don’t want to spend the season’s peak limited by a bulky cast or hiding away from the sun.
Read on for our top five injury causes this summer so you can be more aware and avoid a possible fracture or other lifestyle-disrupting injuries.
The Top Five Injury Causes This Summer
If you’re not slipping on ice down your driveway and ending up with a nasty bruise, you may be tripping over bikes and skateboards that line your walkway instead. Summer brings its own hazards and possibilities for injury. As long as you can shake it off, no harm, no foul. But some injuries can be more grief than they’re worth. These are five of the most common injury causes and how you can avoid them.
Sunburns, heatstroke, and dehydration come more easily when you’re distracted by all the summer fun or working away in the heat. While a sunburn may not seem like a big deal in your day-to-day life, it can lead to premature ageing and skin cancer due to the damage it causes.
The next level of heat-related injury can even be fatal. Heatstroke and dehydration can cause your body to sweat excessively. If your sweat isn’t able to cool you off, you won’t be able to fight the overwhelming heat. You may begin experiencing nausea, weakness, and in severe cases – unconsciousness.
You can enjoy those long hot days, just make sure you drink lots of water and don’t spend too long in the direct sunlight. Protect your skin with long sleeves, wear a hat, take shade breaks, and apply a great sunscreen with a high SPF too.
According to the CAA (Canadian Automobile Association), over 7,500 cyclists are injured yearly, most of which occur during the summer. After all, how much biking do you see in the snow?
While most of these injuries end up with a bruise or a sprain, they can also result in a fracture or even a fatality. The best way to prevent an injury this summer is to wear a helmet, obey traffic rules, and always be aware of your surroundings. It’s recommended you do some warm-up exercises to give your body the most support before you ride.
Whether you’re doing a flip off the deck into the lake and end up with a nasty bruise or break an ankle by the pool from a slip and fall, there are plenty of water-related injuries you should be aware of. The long list includes surfing, tubing, and all the fun activities you can think of! Staying poolside is a great way to beat the heat, but keep in mind that the areas near the pool will likely be slippery. Use caution when making your way around the pool area to avoid a fracture, sprain, or bruise.
You’ll also want to avoid diving headfirst or swimming in unfamiliar waters alone or without proper safety equipment. According to the Canadian Red Cross, drowning is one of the leading causes of preventable death in children between ages 1-4 in Canada.
Plant-Related Rash and Injury
Poison ivy, poison sumac, and poison oak come alive and thrive during the hot summer months. If you brush up against one of these plants, you can get a mild or severe reaction from the chemical urushiol that transfers to your skin.
While a rash may not seem like a big deal, it can cause a lot of disruptions to your summer plans. You’ll want to protect the rash from the sun and avoid itching it, so it doesn’t spread further. Avoid plants you don’t recognize, and stay on the trails to protect yourself from a plant-related rash. They can be eerily close to the walking path, so you may want to brush up on some plant knowledge.
Insect Bites and Bee Stings
Bee stings, mosquito bites, and other insects are the pests of summer we wish would take a hike. Ticks are especially common in many Canadian areas with tall grass or nearby woods. After a hike or outdoor activity, be sure to check your entire body for these, especially under the arms, by your ears, and belly button. If you find one, you’ll want to use a fine-tipped tweezer to grab it as close to the skin as possible. Once it’s removed, clean the bite with rubbing alcohol.
Although these injuries may not be as serious as fractures, they can lead to other illnesses and should be avoided. Mosquitos and ticks can carry things like the West Nile virus and Lyme disease, making them enemy #1.
You can avoid these bites and stings by wearing insect repellant if you’re out late at night or going deep into the woods. If you get a bite or a sting and begin experiencing headaches, weakness or other symptoms, you should see your doctor asap.
Summer is one of the best times of the year for Canadians but also the most short-lived. You want to make the most of this slower season that hosts great BBQs, fun cottage activities, and long days relaxing under the sun. If your lifestyle has been affected by a fracture, you can experience the relief of faster healing with a LIPUS device in a convenient 20 min/day at-home treatment. Heal faster without spending more time in a doctor’s office this summer – contact us for more information.
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