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Safety leads to a satisfying summer

There are many potential dangers to spending time outside during summer.

-graphic by India Ingham, graphics editor

There are many potential dangers to spending time outside during summer.

LeopardLife Michael Modine and Mathias Alling, Staff Writers

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Snakes, ultraviolet rays, and heat are just a few of the threats that are prevalent during summer. To keep safe, there are just a few precautions that make safer environments.

According to the American Cancer Society, exposure to ultraviolet radiation is a major risk factor for most skin cancers. Sunlight is the main source of UV rays, along with tanning lamps and beds. People who receive a lot of UV exposure from these sources are at a greater risk for skin cancer.

There are many different choices when it comes to keeping safe from the ultraviolet rays, including sunscreen, finding shade, or putting on a shirt or hat. All of these limit exposure to UV light.

According to the American Cancer Society, some think about sun protection only when spending a day at the lake, beach, or pool. However, sun exposure adds up after continual subjection, and it happens every time a person is in the sun.

In Texas, there are poisonous snakes that pose a major threat to people if they are bitten by one.

They have to find an antivenom quick or they might not be alive for much longer. If someone is bitten by a rattlesnake it will only take between six to 48 hours to completely kill a human, but it will only take about 10 minutes before you can no longer walk to safety.

“Rattlesnakes, and most snakes, in general, are not aggressive and won’t chase you. They only strike when they’re threatened, handled incorrectly, or accidentally touched by someone who can’t see them while walking or climbing. Still, there are about 8,000 venomous snake bites every year in the U.S., with an average of 10 to 15 deaths, so it’s good to know how to avoid them,” said https://lifehacker.com/how-to-survive-a-rattlesnake-attack-1787353679

Some ways to stay safe from a venomous snake bite are: wear baggy clothes, wear high leather boots if you know that you are going into rattlesnake territory. Stick to well-used trails and don’t stray into the underbrush. Don’t even try to handle or pick up a snake, etc… If you are bitten it is a good idea to find a hospital that can give you the antivenom.

“Always wear boots and thick socks that cover the ankle, and never go barefoot or wear sandals in areas you might find snakes of any kind. Loose-fitting pants aren’t a bad idea either. Stick to well-used trails, and avoid tall grass, weeds, and heavy underbrush where snakes like to hide,” said https://lifehacker.com/how-to-survive-a-rattlesnake-attack-1787353679

Poison Ivy is a plant that has three broad leaves and is usually growing low on the ground or on buildings, but there is an exception in poison sumac which doesn’t follow the leaf rule because it has 13 leaves instead of three.

“One important way of protecting yourself is to know what poison ivy looks like. Poison Ivy and Poison oak usually have three broad leaves. Poison Sumac, that has 13 leaves so it doesn’t follow the three leaf rule but anyway, know what you’re looking for and that doesn’t always mean that you’re not contracted to it or get into it,” WSMS nurse, Gretchen Young, said.

There are many ways to keep safe from poison ivy or minimize the effect. One method involves using bleach to lessen the itching and to generally clean. Although some techniques can burn or hurt they help in lessening the effects. But even these have a limit so there may still be some effects.

“If you get into it, wash with dawn dishwashing liquid. They use that on like birds that have gotten the oil on them when there’s been an oil spill and it works really well because it’s that oily substance in the poison ivy, poison sumac, and poison oak that gets on your skin and causes the rash to happen. Dawn works really well on getting the oil off your skin. Another thing to use is rubbing alcohol to wash your skin with that. You can put it on a washcloth or paper towel or rag or one of those alcohol wipes and just rub your skin really well with that to get the oil off. You still might get a rash but its still not as bad as it could have been. There’s a product called Tecnu. It’s a wash that you use after you’ve gotten in contact with poison ivy. It helps it prevent from being a bad case of a rash. It has the same substance that you use when washing off the oil,” Young said.

Poison Ivy can cause itching and redness of the skin. One of the best ways to avoid poison ivy is to make sure any skin is covered when walking in tall grass. A somewhat unknown fact about Poison Ivy is that the oil can get on to things such as clothes. If you touch your clothes after the cloths being in contact with the poison ivy it can rub off on to someone’s skin, creating a rash. The same danger applies to pets. If a dog has been in contact with poison ivy the oil can get onto a human.        Although the dog has a natural resistance to poison ivy they still have the oil, which makes it a possible danger to humans.

-“You’ll see a red itchy rash. It will usually get worse over time. It usually takes a couple days for the rash to show up Try to avoid it as much as possible, but if you have clothing that has come in contact with the poison Ivy you may need to wash it because the oil from the poison Ivy will rub off on it, which when you make contact with it it may give you the rash. Pets may also be a hazard because the oil can get onto their fur,” Young said.

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Safety leads to a satisfying summer