With summer right around the corner, families and friends alike are taking off to the beach for fun and relaxation. Before loading your car with coolers, sand castle shovels, and beach balls you should take the advice of Dr. Mann, lead physician at the Medical Care San Diego, to ensure your stay healthy and safe.
Dr. Mann’s Advice for a Healthy Day at the Beach
The Sun Can Be Your Friend Or Harm You:
Not only are sunburns extremely painful but they can be a dangerous health risk. Spending too much time under the harmful rays of the sun can lead to melanoma. Melanoma is a very dangerous skin cancer growth on the skin caused by the sun or in tanning booths. It normally resembles moles that are either black or brown but can also be blue, white, red, purple, or pink. An estimated 10,130 people in the United States will die from melanoma annually. Before heading to the beach, make sure that you purchase a sunscreen lotion that blocks both UVA and UVB rays and has the highest possible SPF. Should you suffer from allergies or various conditions caused by chemicals, purchase a PABA-free child’s sunscreen. Melanoma is no laughing matter and all necessary steps to avoid developing it should be taken very seriously.
Do You And Your Children Know How To Swim?
Anyone who goes into the water should know how to swim and children should be accompanied by an adult who can swim. According to the United States Lifesaving Association, 10 children will drown, 140 will end up in the emergency ward and at least 36 more will be hospitalized. Dr. Mann strongly believes that children who have minimal swimming abilities should be equipped with swimming fins. It will help your children stay above the water and protect them from strong ocean currents.
Non-Pro Surfers Take Note:
You might be an excellent swimmer and proficient in surfing and body-boarding, but if you do not stay alert and watch out for shore breaking waves you could be dragged into the bottom of a big wave. This can be extremely life-threatening due to injuries to your head if slammed into the sand. Dr. Mann has pointed out that if you are thrown head-first into the sand you can seriously injure your neck and spine causing death or paralysis. Unless you are a pro surfer, you should stay away from areas that have larger shore breaks. If you are new to the area, find out where these areas are and stay away from them. Take it from the pros, if you start to experience a wipeout, cover your face and head with your arms, curl up into a ball, and roll along with the ocean to prevent spinal and head injury.
Stay Away From Piers:
When swimming, stay far away from piers where others may be fishing. If you are a swimmer, you do not want to have a fish hook penetrate into your skin or in your head. These are very serious lacerations that will end your day at the beach and instead put you in the emergency room to have it removed. Also, fishing lines are almost invisible under water, they can catch a swimmer off guard and entangle them in the line very quickly.
Advice Regarding Fishing from a Pier:
If you fish from a pier, you should pay attention to any possible swimmers in the area and show caution. If within earshot, advise swimmers they are roaming into a fishing area and they should move away from the piers. Also, when casting, use an underhand cast vs arching off your back.
These are just a few cautions you should take before heading to the beach. Use common sense, do not wander too far out in the ocean as the waters are very deceiving. You could end up further away from the shore than you thought you were. Lifeguards spend countless hours rescuing people from the ocean, don’t be one of them. And remember to always apply sunscreen!
If you are experiencing an injury or illness in La Jolla Village we are here to help! Medical Care San Diego is the #1 Walk-in Clinic in La Jolla! Come visit us today! No appointment necessary!