By Corinne Garcia | Edited by Elena Doxey
With summer right around the corner, families are dusting off their winter blues and gearing up for fun in the sun. Whether you’re planning an outdoor family adventure or sending the kids off to camp, staying safe with natural first aid remedies should be your number one priority.
It’s always a good idea to pack a standard first-aid kit for minor cuts and injuries; however, if you need to rely on Mother Nature for first-aid, it’s good to know there are natural ways to treat some outdoor ailments and injuries. Although we can never anticipate them, being prepared, and knowing the best ways to prevent or treat outdoor injuries can help you make the best of an unexpected situation.
Let’s face it―we go on vacation to have a great time, not think about injuries. But the reality is that without the proper planning and packing, you just might end up cutting your fun short. Here are some of the most common outdoor ailments and injuries, along with the best ways to prevent them and the natural remedies to treat them.
Prevention: Wear a large brimmed hat and light, long-sleeved clothing. Be sure to apply a mineral-based UVA/UVB sun lotion to any areas exposed to the sun.
Treatment: Apply aloe vera gel to soothe a sunburn and try taking a short soak in cold water to help stop the burning process.
Prevention: Sunstroke is caused by a rapid decline in sodium, potassium and blood sugar, so it’s important to stay hydrated and well-fueled.
Treatment: It’s important to quickly replace these three lost nutrients, so be sure to pack dried apples and raisins for potassium, along with water and either electrolyte powder or sports drinks that contain electrolytes.
Sprains and strains
Prevention: Make sure you and your kids are wearing good athletic shoes when hiking or doing outdoor activities. Support footwear goes a long way in protecting from sprains and strains.
Treatment: Soak a sprained ankle or wrist in a cold stream or lake, or ice it for 10 minutes every two-to-four hours. Homeopathic arnica pellets can reduce swelling and soreness and speed healing.
Prevention: Wear lightweight, breathable clothing. If you’re in an area where Lyme disease is prevalent, tuck your pants into your socks to prevent tick bites. Be sure to use bug spray; preferably one with a natural base of essential oils such as citronella and lemongrass to keep bugs away.
Treatment: Apply Ledum, an essential oil, to soothe itching. If the skin is broken, tea tree oil works as an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agent. Just dilute it by adding one drop to some lotion or cooking oil.
Prevention: Wear light, long-sleeved clothing and tuck your pant legs into your socks.
Treatment: Aloe helps to soothe the itchiness. To help dry out the rash, try covering it with mud (it really works!) or a paste of baking soda and water.
Wishing you a happy and safe spring and summer season!
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