The Scuba Diving Sickness, or Decompression Sickness, is a medical condition that affects divers who do not properly adjust to the pressure changes underwater. It is caused by the rapid decrease in pressure that comes with diving at great depths. This sudden change can cause nitrogen gas to form bubbles in the body’s tissues and bloodstream, leading to a range of symptoms which can be mild or very serious.
The most common symptoms of Decompression sickness are joint pain, fatigue, vertigo and dizziness. In more severe cases it can cause paralysis or even death.
The risk of getting scuba diving sickness increases with deeper dives and longer dive times. It is also important to note that a diver’s individual health and fitness level can also increase their risk.
Preventing Scuba Diving Sickness
Fortunately, there are some preventive measures that divers can take to reduce their risk of getting scuba diving sickness. The most important factor is for divers to ascend gradually from deep dives so that their bodies have time to adjust to the change in pressure. Additionally, divers should always use an ascent rate calculator when planning dives.
Another important factor for reducing the risk of decompression sickness is for divers to maintain good physical fitness and health prior to a dive. Divers should avoid smoking cigarettes before diving as well as drinking alcohol 24 hours prior and ensure they get enough rest before a dive.
Scuba diving sickness is a medical condition caused by rapid changes in pressure while underwater. It can have mild or severe symptoms including joint pain, fatigue, vertigo and dizziness and can even be fatal if left untreated. Fortunately, there are some steps divers can take such as ascending gradually from deep dives and maintaining good physical fitness before diving which can help prevent this condition from occurring.