Reprinted from Berthoud Surveyor
With the beginning of the summer season comes a start of some new aches and pains to remind us that there can be a price for all of this playtime. Living in Colorado, with this glorious weather, most opt to head outdoors as much as possible which is always a healthy option, unless you overdo it. Strenuous activity can not only cause a temporary ache, but can result in health issues much past the summer months if certain aches and pains are ignored.
• Mosquito bites- Most understand the need for insect spray, especially around the evening hours. However, these pesky critters are bound to get you at some point. A quick fix is to apply some roll-on antiperspirant to the area as soon as possible, says Ken Haller, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University. The aluminum salt will shrink a mosquito bite down to nothing within 20 minutes. Stash a small travel-size bottle in your purse or backpack and you’ll always be prepared.
• Getting Overheated-Beside the sensible solution of getting out of the sun and get into an air conditioned environment, dunking your clothes in a river or lake, or under a faucet, will cool a person down initially. Also, continue to drink water. If you feel poorly after 15 minutes, or begin running a fever, call a doctor as soon as possible. Do not forget to stay hydrated, drinking 8 to ten glasses of water a day. Some doctors even recommend 10 to 12 glasses a day as you increase your summer activities.
• Sunburn- In Colorado, the sun’s rays can be particularly brutal. If you forget to slather on the sunscreen, or forget to reapply the sunscreen throughout your day outside, a lukewarm oatmeal bath can relieve your stinging skin. Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory properties, dilating blood vessels and decreasing redness and pain.
• Back pain or joint pain- An increase in activity without proper stretching or other preparation can take its toll. According to Loveland physician Kenneth Pettine, of Rocky Mountain Associates in Orthopedic Medicine, “We have found gardening or yard work to be the most common cause of lumbar strain/sprain treated in the office during the summer months.” If you feel like you’re extending yourself, you probably are. That is when it is time to stop the activity and come back to it later. Tendonitis, which is an inflammation of the cords that connect muscle to bone, is seen more often this time of year, according to Dr. Dianne McCallister, the chief medical officer at Porter Adventist. She stated in a recent article that there are many simple things people can do to lessen their chances of developing tendonitis, including stretching muscles prior to an exercise session and working on strengthening muscles used for favorite activities. “Ease up or stop if you notice pain in an area and avoiding doing one activity for a prolonged period of time,” she said.
Regardless of the summer activity being done, there is a risk of some aches and pains to accompany it. With proper preparation to avoid the strain and then proper treatment if the ache does occur, this can be a fun filled, active summer. As always, call a physician if the ailment does not go away with home treatments or rest.