The Summer Time Bruise

Some tips on dealing with insults to the epidermis now through Labor Day:I

nsect Stings Painful and occasional far worse, some people can have life-threatening allergic reactions to bee stings. If you think you may be one of them, ask your physician about shots that desensitize the body to insect venom. If you are stung and experience difficulty breathing, faintness, confusion or hives, get emergency care immediately.

A sting may be tough on you, but it’s always fatal to the bee. The stinger is ripped out of its tail and is embedded in your skin. Remove it only with tweezers, then swab the site with disinfectant. You can limit swelling by applying ice.

Plant Rashes All you have to do is brush bare skin against poison ivy, poison sumac or poison oak and—if you’re susceptible—you’re likely to experience a reaction including redness, itching and swelling.

It’s a good idea to wear long trousers and a long sleeved shirt when hiking in areas unfamiliar to you. If you do come into contact with the oily resin on these plants, wash your skin immediately in cool water. Soaking in cool water helps reduce the itching and blisters once they’ve begun. Calamine lotion and one percent hydro-cortisone creams also offer relief.

Sunburn The damage potential of too much sun goes well beyond hot, red, aching skin. Over years, it can increase your risk of skin cancer. The best idea is to limit the amount of ultraviolet radation you absorb. If you’re going to be out in the sun, wear a broad-brimmed hat, cover exposed areas, and use sunscreen labeled SOF30 or greater. Avoid being outside between 10 am to 3 pm when UV radiation is at its highest.

Ticks and Mosquitos All over the world and in warmer climes, in grasses, woodlands, or other vegetated areas, these blood-loving pests can carry diseases such as Rocky Mountain Fever and Lyme disease in the case of ticks and Zika and West Nile virus, dengue, and malaria can be caught from mosquitos. Vaccines or prophylactic drugs are available to protect against some vector borne diseases; however, use of repellents (such as permethrin), protective clothing and shoes, and netting is recommended.

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