Diving is all about experiencing life in a new place, i.e., the marine world. It is fun until it seems a bit dangerous if some things go wrong. Before that happens, scuba divers are advised to take some safety precautions to avoid injuries caused by diver error.
Ideally, you need to know what you are dealing with before taking these precautions. Hence, in this article, the various scuba diving injuries will be discussed. Further, the various tips for safety and training will be explained for a good diving experience.
What are the Common Diving Injuries or Errors?
Diving injuries are in several types, depending on the situation that a diver finds himself/herself. Nevertheless, some common ones may threaten or affect their confidence for the next diving session. They are:
Decompression Sickness is a common injury when diving. It is often caused by an increase in water pressure, which often affects the Nitrogen in the air tank. Ultimately, the pressured Nitrogen is forced into the body system, loading it and making a diver unable to dive properly back to the surface.
Another diving problem is Air Embolism. It is quite common in new divers because they are still used to holding their breaths when diving. The rule is not to hold breath because increased pressure in water means increased gas density in the tank. Therefore, by ascension, pressure decreases, but the gas expands, forcing its way into the lungs. If a diver’s breath was held, the gas expands in the lungs and ultimately into the bloodstream.
This condition can go from mild to severe, depending on gas expansion in the lungs.
Decompression Illness or DCI is a combination of both Decompression Sickness and Air Embolism. Sometimes, it shares similar symptoms with either of them, while at other times, it feels different. However, it is often associated with sins such as itchy skin, numbness, difficult breathing, paralysis, shock, weakness, and lightheadedness.
Face Barotrauma, also called Face or Mask Squeeze, is another diving injury caused by pressure build-up in the face at higher underwater depths. By going deeper in water, pressure increase compresses the mask, forcing the eyeballs to experience discomfort. At this point, some eye vessels burst, and a reddened eye condition is formed – the Mask Squeeze. However, it is not life-threatening as you’d hope.
What Should Scuba Divers Do for Safety?
Scuba diving is an adventurous activity, but you will need to be careful of the things you do for your own safety. Below is a list of things that will aid your safety in the next underwater experience.
Always Plan Your Dive Properly
One of the most significant things you need to do before diving for your safety is to plan your dive. If you don’t plan your dive properly, many things could go wrong underwater, affecting you.
In a bid to do this, you should ensure to go with a dive buddy. The essence of having a fellow diver is to look out for each other by reading different elements, i.e., depth, air level, entry point, etc.
Also, you should do a good buoyancy control before going underwater. It is vital for your safety, as it reduces fatigue and improves underwater breathing.
Check Your Gear Thoroughly
The next safety tip is to check your gear properly. Many divers are fond of considering only a few things they think will be important underwater. Sadly, some things they think they won’t need become what will be essential. Therefore, it is advisable for safety, to pack good gear without packing too much weight.
Some of the things needed include a buoyancy compensator device, regulator, mask straps, strobe light, backup light, and a few others. Also, ensure to check the state of these pieces of equipment – make sure they are in good condition before diving.
Avoid Exceeding Your Limits
One of the rules of diving is: never try to dive to impress. No matter how good you think you are, exceeding your limit is one thing you should never do. Stick to what you can do best or the depths you can go. If you do beyond yourself, you could face decompression sickness, and that might temporarily affect you.
In the same vein, if night diving is not your thing yet, you shouldn’t try to force it. Go night diving when it is convenient and go with a dive buddy – a professional one.
Get a Personal Dive Computer
Of all the equipment in your dive gear, a dive computer seems like one thing you should never do without. It is the perfect tracker for you, as it monitors several things that will aid diving underwater. It gives information about time, air levels, depths, temperatures, and many other things you will need to know when you reach entry point.
Get a good one.
Driving under influence is bad; Diving under influence is worse. You should never drink before or after diving because it affects your body’s response to changing conditions of the underwater environment. Apart from slow reaction time and poor body coordination, you face the risk of Nitrogen Narcosis or Decompression Sickness.
Practice Breathing Exercises
One more thing that will help you stay safe underwater is practicing breathing exercises to prepare yourself for unforeseen circumstances. With good breathing exercises and mindfulness techniques, you will learn how to stay calm even when things go sideways. Besides, it is one proven, effective method of stay fit and reducing the risk of decompression sickness.
If there are things that will help a diver improve his/her experience underwater, it is always important to state them because anything could happen when diving. Such a diver will have to count on these tips or techniques for safety. Above is a list of great safety tips; if you have others, please do not hesitate to try them for your own sake.