MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) The last thing you want to do this summer is get stuck nursing an injury or illness. But let's face it, whether it's heading to the beach or pool, or just spending time outside, we're at a risk to experience one of the Top Ten Summer Bummers.
Doctors are revealing to WMBF News the most frequent seasonal illnesses or injuries that send people to their waiting room, people like Lindsay Lipschultz.
Just hours after getting off the plane and into the sand, Lipschultz ended up in the doctor's office getting stitches.
"I was running and my foot went into a puddle and it got cut under the water. The doctor said it could have been glass or a sharp shell," she explains.
Now for vacation, instead of running on the beach Lindsay's spending the rest of her time being rolled around in a wheelchair.
Cuts like Lipschultzs' make the list of Top Ten Summer Bummers in Dr. Ron Reynolds' office.
"Shells, fish hooks, there are any number of things you can get cut on, and if you have a foot injury, suddenly that beach trip changes dramatically," Reynolds said.
He suggested you wear some sort of water shoe that will protect your feet. Even just a flip flop will help in the sand.
The number nine injury that will change your trip: an orthopedic injury.
"You have a lot of irregular surfaces and then you have someone who becomes a sports star just while they are down here. Twisting knees, injuring shoulders and falling on surfaces because you're trying to catch that football you haven't been able to catch in the last 25 years," Reynolds says those sports moves will land you in his office for sure.
Number eight and seven on the list: jellyfish and sting ray stings.
"Typically most summers we'll see a lot of jelly fish stings. I usually care for around a 10 to one ratio between jellyfish and sting rays. Last year it was just the opposite. Sting rays left and right," explains the doctor.
Doctors can treat both but there's not much you can do to avoid them.
What you can avoid are the next four summer bummers on the list. Numbers six through three involve the heat and liquid intake.
Sunburn, diaper rash, dehydration and urinary tract infections. A UTI is one of the ailments Reynolds said he treats the most of.
"You want to make sure you are drinking plenty of fluids... That's the main thing ... And make sure you are urinating frequently," Reynolds said. "Don't hold it. The more you drink, the more you urinate the more you urinate the more you flush the bacteria out of your bladder."
The next on the list is one that can be very dangerous. The number two summer bummer is MRSA. The super bug can enter the skin through an open wound and is resistant to most antibiotics. It can send you to the hospital and needs to be taken seriously.
"If you are developing an abscess you need to get it seen," Reynolds explained. "Sometimes we can treat just with antibiotics but they frequently need to be opened up and drained. The longer you wait the worse it gets."
The number one summer bummer, and the illness doctors see most often during the season: swimmers ear. The patients were lined up in the waiting room with it when WMBF News visited Reynolds' Beach Urgent Care office.
"Essentially what happens is that water gets in the ear and you don't get it all out, you get into a scenario of a warm, dark, moist environment ... pretty much what an ear is during the summer ... It's optimal for bacteria growth," Reynolds said.
So make sure you keep your ears nice and dry.
Now that you have the top ten you're armed with what you need to know to stay out of the doctor's office this summer and out on the beach where you belong.
"Use common sense and know you can injure yourself on vacation. A lot of people don't think it's possible but it is. We see it every day," Reynolds said.