Camping and hiking are two of the greatest ways to get out in nature, enjoy good company, and get some exercise.
That being said, facing the elements can be dangerous and challenging. There are a few injuries that occur commonly among hikers and campers, which you should be aware of if you’re planning on going on a trip.
Whether injuries come from lack of knowledge or simple mistakes, they do occur. Therefore, you should know what to do if that happens.
So, what are some of the most common hiking and camping injuries?
Camping and Hiking Injuries to Be Aware of
Injuries happen when you least expect it, so it’s good to have a comprehensive first aid kit. Here are some of the things it should include:
Traversing through roots and stones puts stress on the joints and ankles. Even the most experienced hiker can step on a root the wrong way and experience a serious sprain.
Sprains come in different degrees of severity. As a rule of thumb, if you hear a pop when the injury occurs, or you can’t hold any weight on one of your ankles, stop there and find a doctor.
In case you roll your ankle and it’s in pain, makes sure to stop and apply a compression. If you’re down for an hour and it still hurts, you should set up camp.
Fatigue is a very dangerous reality of camping and hiking. It usually occurs when one has been walking in the sun for too long, hasn’t eaten enough, or hasn’t consumed enough water.
Decision making is worse when one is fatigued, leading to more dangerous activity and decreased awareness. If you’re feeling fatigued on a hike, sit down and drink some water.
This one is directly tied to fatigue as too much sun can drain your energy. To reduce your odds of sunburn, pack clothing that will give your body adequate protection.
Getting tan is great, and you will get tanned if you’re out in the sun. However, the risk of experiencing sunstroke or a crippling sunburn is real, so make sure to bring proper clothing and sunscreen.
Branches and stones can harm a person’s skin. Cuts are extremely common while hiking and camping, so be sure to have the appropriate medical supplies in your first aid kit.
The first thing you should do is stop the bleeding, followed by a cleaning of the wound. Double check that there is no dirt in the wound, and then wrap the injury.
Falling is a reality of camping and hiking. If you’re going to engage in dangerous activities, you should know what to do when you or someone around you experiences a concussion.
In case a person blacks out, you should get medical attention immediately. If they are responsive, check whether or not they know who and where they are. Also, make sure they react to touch and other sensations.
Know Where You to Go in Case of Emergency
If you’re traveling and experience an injury, you may need to transport yourself or others to the nearest hospital. Make sure that you know where you’re going to go if something does happen.
There are likely many options for quality urgent care, so prepare yourself ahead. Camping and hiking injuries could keep you in bed for months.