07/24/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

5 Summer Safety Tips

If an ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure these simple tips may save you an unwanted trip to the emergency room or your local orthopedic surgeon. Remember, we don't make house calls any more. Have fun and be safe!!

1. Improper shoe wear. Running even just a few steps in sandals and flip-flops is an excellent way to exchange summer fashion for a cast. These types of footwear provide little traction or lateral support. Also cutting the grass with a lawn mower in sandals or flip-flops is neither fashionable nor safe.

2. Shallow water diving accidents.
As the temperature begins to soar, many people will begin to plan for lazy summer weekends at the shore. This summertime picture of Americana need not be shattered in just a few careless moments. Diving into above the ground pools and shallow water continues to be a far too common preventable summertime catastrophe. This nonchalant act has unfortunately changed many lives forever. Not just the injured teen but also those of their friends and families. Remember that the summer is brief but paralysis usually lasts forever.

3. All beverages are not created equally. A simple truth of life is that liquor, beer and wine are all wet but they are not water. On hot summer days, water will hydrate your body while amongst other things alcohol tends to dehydrate. Simple rule for summertime hydration: drink 2 bottles of water between each alcoholic beverage.

4. Have fun but please act your age. Summer may remind us of our youth but that is where the fantasy should end. Nothing is more frustrating for your friendly orthopedic surgeon and embarrassing for yourself as when both our pleasant summer day is interrupted; because a 50 year old otherwise intelligent stock analyst decided to show their kids how to really get 'big air' on their skateboard. A cast as appropriate treatment for a simple wrist fracture in a kid is commonly surgery and months of rehab for an adult. Pay attention. You've been warned.

5. Sunscreen. Sunscreen. Sunscreen.
Skin cancer is real and preventable. Apply liberally and often. And don't forget the ears. When possible avoid unnecessary sun exposure altogether. Remember purchase sunscreen with both UVA and UVB blockers.