Picture this: you’ve spent a day laying on the beach soaking up the golden rays of sunshine and just a couple of hours later you’re lying in a hospital bed being treated due to sun poisoning. After a day of fun in the sun and surfing the last place that anyone wants to visit is the urgent care clinic. Yet so many individuals find themselves stuck in these situations due to simple events that could have played out differently. Before you find yourself being one of these people there are a few rules that you need to follow in order to protect you and your family from adding to the statistics of beach related injuries. Many beach accidents could have easily been avoided by following a couple of simple rules. What are some of the medical emergencies that could have prevented and how do you know to avoid them next time?

Red as a lobster

One of the many reasons that so many individuals find themselves at an urgent care clinic is due to sunburn. There are a multitude of Americans who simply decide to let their skin crisp for hours or simply forget to put on a block that find themselves with boils, rashes, and fevers in the hours after coming home from the beach. Prevent this pain before it can ever happen by using a simple sunblock. The American Academy of Dermatology says that you should be using a block that is at least 30 SPF and that your block should also be waterproof and applied numerous times throughout your sun visit. Sure, this may sound like a lot to handle, but isn’t it better than staining your shirt when your sun poisoning pops? This can all be avoided by simply remembering to put on sunblock.

Volleying the pain

Another leading reason in going to an urgent care clinic after the beach is due to a sports injury. 63% of volleyball injuries are from jumping and surfers are constantly throwing out different muscles when attempting to ride waves. These different paints usually always require medical care to get the person back on their feet and feeling better again. Before you get out and take the surf or jump to send that ball back over the net, be sure to stretch and prep your muscles for a game or a ride so that you don’t end up with a beach injury that leaves you groaning in pain for days at a time afterwards. The beach is supposed to be fun, it should not result in injury care.

Honey it bit me

Pesky little crabs can hide underneath the sand and snap their jaw like claws when they are started. Or more so than that, a jagged shell or rock can easily scrape you to the point of needing walk in treatment. Wound treatment is another popular reason that sends many into an urgent care clinic after a long day at the beach. No one wants to have to turn around and get stitches because a crab got a little to snappy. Be careful where you’re stepping and be sure to clean any wounds immediately once you are out of the water. While urgent care clinics can stitch you right up, no one really wants to wonder where to get stitches after fun in the sun days.

These are just a handful of the things you should be aware of when you spend your day near the open ocean. While you should be enjoying every second, you don’t want to have to rush straight to an emergency care clinic afterwards. The sun takes enough out of a person without the added stress of having to join the 110 million people who visit emergency rooms regularly. Watch out for where you walk, how much sunblock you put on, and be careful in the sports that you play at the beach and before you know it, you’ll be able to go home and rest in your bed instead of heading to the urgent care clinic to fix you up!