We’re out there to have fun, right? Injury and illness spoil the fun – read below to find out how to protect yourself and those you love.
Protect yourself with sunscreen and sun protective clothing. The degree of protection is expressed as a sun protective factor (SPF) and the Federal Trade Commission carefully monitors advertising claims. For example, if you would normally burn after 10 minutes of unprotected exposure, an SPF 15 product should extend your safe time to 150 minutes.
Not all sunscreens are created equal. They have different ingredients and none of them will protect you against all the sun’s rays. Apply often, even the water-resistant ones, especially after swimming and vigorous exercise.
Special note for young children - keep them out of the sun as much as possible, get them a wide-brim hat and use child-friendly sunscreen on all exposed skin. Youth HydroSkin tops are great for active youngster; you don’t have to keep chasing them down to reapply sunscreen lotions.
Sunglasses protect your precious eyes from the sun's rays. Buy quality glasses that meet the American National Standard Institute's ANSI Z80.3 - 2001 standard. This guarantees the glasses protect your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) radiation and ensure you'll see colors correctly (for example, the colors of traffic signals or your buddy's boat). Our Smith Optics sunglasses meet this standard and use carbonic lens material, the most impact resistant lens material in the industry. They also block 100% of UV A, B and C rays, regardless of the lens tint. The color of the lenses doesn't affect protection and larger lenses or wrap-around glasses help block out the light coming around the edges.
Water – the Good & the Bad
Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to start drinking water, and make sure to hydrate frequently. Even though the experts disagree on whether sports drinks really help, you can’t beat water for staying hydrated.
Many waterways are polluted these days. If you can’t carry all the drinking water you need, bring a water filter. These will take out the parasites, like giardia and bacteria, such as E-coli. The illnesses caused by these beasties can be quite serious; don’t take the chance.
Plants and Animals
If anyone in your party has severe allergy to the stings of insects such as bees and wasps, be sure to have a sting kit along and know how to use it. They’re a prescription item but worth adding to the first aid kit. Many more people in the US die from insect stings than from snakebites.
Fools, Drunks and Small Children
Watch out for each other and Boat Safe. See you on the water!