Phuket Tourist Alert: How to Avoid The Dreaded DCI When Diving in Phuket
Decompression Illness, or DCI, is a serious but relatively rare affliction for Phuket divers. However, this is not the case for tourists, and while tour operators in Phuket stress safety vigorously, as a visitor to the island, there are a few things you need to know about DCI:
DCI or the related illness, DSI (Decompression Sickness) occurs, on average, during 1 in 10,000 tourist dives. The symptoms of both are similar. Patients describe a feeling of dizziness when leaving the water, and their complexion may become blotchy; they will feel weak in the knees and may experience a wild mood swing. Also, a shortness of breath is common, as is a loss of bladder control – and in extreme cases, extreme pain and then complete paralysis can occur.
Other warning signs include intense fatigue and bouts of coughing, but all of the above can be easily avoided by following these simple safety instructions:
Always drink large amounts of water to avoid dehydration when diving Phuket, as the Thailand environment is one that rapidly sucks liquid from your body, even though you are submerged all day in the wet stuff.
Always ascend slowly and use your dive computer just like you use your iPad or other high-tech device – intently, and all the time!
Do not dive beyond the no-decompression limits, no matter how tempting the coral or shipwreck. Ignoring these limits is the fastest way to become a wreck yourself.
When doing multiple dives in one day, pay even closer detail to the above safety instructions, as fatigue will always increase the chance of mistakes.
And if you do come down with symptoms of DCI or DCS, seek medical attention immediately, and don’t wait for the above … Read the rest