Backpack Hiking Injuries Can Be Avoided

Keep Your  Hiking Trip Injury Free

Hiking on the trail mean opportunities for wounds, but proper planning and insight can avoid many injuries that render you uncomfortable. The last thing any hiker needs when they finally hit the trails with their backpacking backpack is to encounter an injury. No one can predict unexpected problems 100% of the time, but many can be eliminated. Here are some ways to prevent common situations that could ruin your excursion. It’s more a matter of prevention and ways to avoid the injury that are most helpful.

Preventative Measures

Proper-fitting hiking boots are the best way to prevent painful blisters. Make sure you have very supportive boots or shoes that don’t rub your heels when you walk. Wearing tight-fitting crew socks is not the best choice compared to a looser ankle sock. If you end up with a blister in spite of preventative measures, only pop it if it’s big and painful. You should have a needle in your first aid kit that you can sterilize either with alcohol or the campfire coals.  Drain the fluid after popping.  Keep the area very clean and dab some triple antibiotic gel on it and cover it with a Bandaid.  These are all common items you should have in your hiking bag. Diabetics must be more cautious than others when it comes to foot wounds. Check any injuries daily for redness or swelling, and see your doctor when you return from your trek if you observe these things.

What Is Illiotibial Band Syndrome

Backpack hiking really works the legs. Without proper stretching or warming up before and after the hike, injury is more likely.  ITBS, known as Illiotibial Band Syndrome, can cause a lot of discomfort and pain. The illiotibial band is a ligament that runs down between your thigh and shin, and secures your knee in place. When it is over used, pain will result. Trekking also works your Achilles tendon, which is another area that requires stretching prior to walking. If you don’t stretch, it can become inflamed and cause pain and discomfort.  

How Do I Repair The Pain?

When you first feel pain in these areas, take a break, sit down and take some Ibuprofen or Motrin. Rest your legs and apply ice if possible. If you continue the hike in spite of pain, you will only make it worse. It could render you barely able to walk at all, and that’s not a position a backpack hiker wants to be in, so take the time to properly stretch.

Rest Is Best

As a trekker, you can prevent serious fatigue.  By learning to be aware of your body’s limits during strenuous activity, you can save yourself many aches, pains and injuries. The best cure is rest before continuing the hike.  We’re talking about a no-hike day of complete chill time. Refuel your body and hydrate your muscles. Come on, kick back a day for prevention of worsening your injury.

Drink, Drink, Drink!

Dehydration can be very serious. It can cause dizziness, headache or fatigue. You know the drill, as a hiking backpacker, you have to bring plenty of water in your hiking backpack. If you are a beginner, take it from experienced hikers,you need to stary hydrated. If you don’t properly filter your drinking water, you could end up with Giardia, which comes from bacteria in the water that may not even be visible  to the eye which causes stomach cramps, vomiting and diarrhea. If you suspect your water was to blame for these symptoms, try this remedy. I know it sounds weird, but carry a garlic bulb in your hiking bag and eat a few raw cloves each day until you feel better. The garlic acts as a homeopathic cure for intestinal upsets. Feel better naturally.

Your Skin Needs Protection

Sunburn is totally preventable. In every season, you absolutely should be carrying and applying sunscreen in your trekking backpack. Remember to reapply sunscreen after 80 minutes of walking and choose a sweat-proof product. Even during winter, UV rays that radiate off the snow are capable of causing sunburn. If you end up with a sunburned neck, dampen your bandanna with water for a soothing temporary solution, and cover up over-exposed skin. I know you learned this in Hiking 101.

Oh No! Poison Ivy

Yuck! You encountered poison ivy! There are several remedies for this, but I swear by using Ivy Dry Soap and Ivy Dry Super Itch Spray or Cream. Amazon and drug stores carry these items. Oddly enough, down a couple gulps of Pepto Bismol.  Its alkalinity soothes the itching.

Prevention Is Best

Try these tips for insuring yourself more quality backpacking backpack time. Being out in the wild is the best medicine ever. The old saying that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” really holds true. You don’t want pain or anything else to spoil your time in the outdoors. Be aware and spare yourself possible calamities.

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