Summer Injury Cheat Sheet

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Summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors and get more active. But the seasonal fun sometimes comes with a price. Don’t let common injuries keep you from making the most of sunshine. Here are quick fixes for those summertime mishaps – print this post out and keep it with you as you enjoy the season!

Minor burns
To treat, run under cool water for 10-15 minutes to reduce the swelling. Apply antibiotic ointment – not butter! If there is pain, apply an ice pack but not directly on the exposed skin. Use a cloth as a barrier.

Sprains
Apply a cold compress for 20 minutes at a time, elevate the injured body part higher than the heart, rest it and wrap if necessary. Over the counter analgesics can be used to reduce pain. But if swelling and pain persists, seek medical attention.

Scrapes and cuts
For minor scrapes and cuts, wash with gentle soap and water or even plain water if necessary, apply antibiotic ointment and bandage lightly. If you can’t stop the bleeding or the cut looks deep, seek medical attention.

Bee stings
Remove the stinger if present (appears as a black dot at sting site) by gently rubbing your fingernail or a credit card over it parallel with the skin. If using tweezers, use caution not to squeeze the sac which will release more venom. Wash with soap and water and apply calamine lotion or a paste of baking soda and water to neutralize the venom and reduce discomfort. If a known allergy to bee venom exists or if the person develops trouble breathing or hives give them an antihistamine such as Benadryl and call 911 or get to the nearest ER.

Snake bites
Call an ambulance or get to the nearest hospital. Keep the limb lower than the heart and stay calm. Don’t suck the wound. Carry a snake-bite kit with you if you live or vacation in snake country.

Bug bites
With mosquito, tick and spider bites, ice can reduce swelling and discomfort. Calamine lotion can reduce itching. Observe for more serious side effects such as a bull’s eye or generalized rash, swollen glands, excessive swelling and redness at site. If these occur, have it checked by a healthcare professional.

Minor summertime injuries are inevitable but by knowing and using the quick fixes above, you can minimize discomfort and complications and have fun all season long!