Helpful Info

  • Injury prevention tips

    Here is some info you may find helpful in your outdoor adventures

    Here are five of the most common outdoor related injuries, how to prevent them and how to proceed with treatment should they occur

Sunburn and Frostbite

  • Injury prevention tips

    Weather Induced Injuries are some of the most common outdoor related injuries.

    Weather plays a major role in the camping experience. Of course it’s necessary to read the weather report before the trip.

    Frostbite, heat stroke, and dehydration are a few weather induced injuries that plague campers and outdoor enthusiasts.

    Preparation keys the prevention of these injuries. Don’t pack a ton of clothes, but include the clothing that’s capable of handling extreme weather change.

    Protect your skin with sunscreen. Wearing sunscreen and hats protects your skin from sun burn. Sun burn contributes to dehydration. If you get badly burned, then rest in the shade, drink plenty of water, and bring a bottle of aloe to treat the affected skin.

    Pack enough fresh water. Drinking plenty of fluids is essential to a healthier you. It prevents the chances of heat stroke and dehydration. Pack enough fresh water for drinking purposes.

Skin Ailments

  • Injury prevention tips

    Skin Ailments such as rashes from Poison Ivy are a common occurance.

    Your skin can suffer in the wilderness. Rashes caused by poison ivy, sumac, and oak can ruin your trip and irritate skin.

    How do you treat unexpected rashes?

    1- Immediately rinse your skin with lukewarm, soapy water. If you can rinse your skin immediately after touching poison ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac, you may be able to rinse off some of the oil. If not washed off, the oil can spread from person to person and to other areas of your body.

    2- Wash your clothing. Thoroughly wash all of the clothes you were wearing when you came into contact with the poisonous plant. The oil can stick to clothing, and if it touches your skin, it can cause another rash.

    3- Wash everything that may have the oil on its surface. Besides clothing, the oil from poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac can stick to many surfaces, including gardening tools, golf clubs, leashes and even a pet’s fur. Be sure to rinse your pet’s fur, and wash tools and other objects with warm, soapy water.

    4- Do not scratch!!, scratching can cause an infection.

    5- Leave blisters alone. If blisters open, do not remove the overlying skin, as the skin can protect the raw wound underneath and prevent infection.

    6- Take short, lukewarm baths. To ease the itch, take short, lukewarm baths in a colloidal oatmeal preparation, which you can buy at your local drugstore. You can also draw a bath and add one cup of baking soda to the running water. Taking short, cool showers may also help.

    7- Consider calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream. Apply calamine lotion to skin that itches. If you have a mild case, a hydrocortisone cream or lotion may also help.

    8- Apply cool compresses to the itchy skin. You can make a cool compress by wetting a clean washcloth with cold water and wringing it out so that it does not drip. Then, apply the cool cloth to the itchy skin.

    9- Consider taking antihistamine pills. These pills can help reduce itching, however use with caution. You should not apply an antihistamine to your skin, as doing so can worsen the rash and the itch.

Bug Bites

  • Injury prevention tips

    Bug Bites and Stings can be a real annoyance when outdoors.

    Bee Stings:

    As soon as you have been stung by a bee, remove the sting and the venomous sac if it has been left in the skin. Do this by scraping it out, either with your fingernails or using something with a hard edge, such as a bank card.

    When removing the sting, be careful not to spread the venom further under your skin and do not puncture the venomous sac.

    Do not pinch the sting out with your fingers or a pair of tweezers because you may spread the venom. If a child has been stung, an adult should remove the sting.

    Wasps and hornets do not usually leave the sting behind, so could sting you again. If you have been stung and the wasp or hornet is still in the area, walk away calmly to avoid being stung again.

    Tick Bites

    If you have been bitten by a tick (a small arachnid), remove it as soon as possible to reduce the risk of getting a tick-borne infection, such as Lyme disease (a bacterial infection that causes a rash).

    To remove the tick:

    Use tweezers, wear gloves or cover your fingers with tissue to avoid touching the tick.

    Grab the tick as close to the skin as you can, and gently pull straight up until all parts are removed.

    Do not twist or jerk the tick as you are removing it because this may cause the mouthparts to break off and remain in your skin once the tick has been removed.

    Wash your hands with soap and water.

    You can also use petroleum jelly, alcohol or a lit match to remove a tick.

  • Sprains/Fractures

    • Injury prevention tips

      Sprains and Fractures are fairly treatable with a bit of knowledge.

      Traversing rock and uneven terrain may result in common ankle or wrist sprains. If this occurs it’s good to have portable dry ice packs that can easily be applied to reduce the swelling. Also, immobilize the sprain with a splint, medical tape, and elevate it to decrease blood flow to the region.

      If you happen to fracture a bone then it’s a good thing you packed a sling with lots of medical tape. Make a splint with a stick or long piece of wood, rolled up newspaper, or blanket. Immobilize it in whatever way possible. You can tape the limb to a splint or if it’s an arm injury then a sling will be useful.

    • Open Wounds and Cuts

      • Injury prevention tips

        Minor scrapes, cuts and other wounds are easily treated

        Whether you scrape your knee, cut yourself with a knife, or rip open your chin when rock climbing, having the necessary tools to clean, treat, and keep the wounds clean is essential for your health.

        Bandages, medical tape, hydrogen peroxide, bacitracin, and cotton swabs need to be packed into your first aid kit. When confronted with an open wound you must clean it with at least water. Hydrogen peroxide provides the disinfectant to sterilize your wound. I suggest using cotton swabs to clean out the wound with fluid. Then cover the wound with bacitracin to help it heal. Finally, secure it with bandages and medical tape.

        Whatever you encounter when camping, it’s important be prepared. Having the necessary knowledge and first aid tools lends you an upper hand if injury occurs.

        Also, choosing the right backpack among options available will help packing for camping and first aid. It’s easier camping when your first aid kit, water, tent, sleeping bag, and food all fit in one light compact backpack. If you encounter drastic injuries that call for immediate medical action, then moving fast with the resources on your back is important.