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## How to Ascend Safely Scuba Diving

Scuba diving is an amazing way to explore the underwater world, but it’s important to remember that it’s also a potentially dangerous activity. One of the most important things you can do to stay safe while scuba diving is to ascend properly.

**Why is it important to ascend properly?**

Ascending too quickly can cause decompression sickness, which is a serious medical condition that can cause pain, paralysis, and even death. Decompression sickness occurs when nitrogen bubbles form in your body’s tissues as you ascend. These bubbles can block blood flow and cause serious damage.

**How to ascend properly**

To ascend properly, you need to follow these steps:

1. **Ascend slowly.** The recommended ascent rate is 30 feet per minute (9 meters per minute). This gives your body time to adjust to the decreasing pressure and prevents nitrogen bubbles from forming.
2. **Make frequent stops.** Every 10-15 feet (3-4 meters), stop for a minute or two to allow your body to catch up. This will help to prevent decompression sickness.
3. **Use a dive computer.** A dive computer can help you to track your ascent rate and make sure that you’re ascending slowly enough.
4. **Be aware of your surroundings.** As you ascend, be aware of any obstacles in your path. You don’t want to bump into anything and get injured.
5. **Stay hydrated.** Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your dive to help prevent dehydration. Dehydration can make you more susceptible to decompression sickness.
6. **Don’t dive if you’re tired.** Diving when you’re tired can increase your risk of decompression sickness.
7. **Don’t dive if you’ve been drinking alcohol.** Alcohol can dehydrate you and make you more susceptible to decompression sickness.

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**What are the signs and symptoms of decompression sickness?**

The signs and symptoms of decompression sickness can include:

* Joint pain
* Muscle pain
* Fatigue
* Nausea
* Vomiting
* Dizziness
* Confusion
* Paralysis

If you experience any of these symptoms, stop diving immediately and seek medical attention.

**How is decompression sickness treated?**

Decompression sickness is treated by recompression therapy. This involves placing you in a chamber that is pressurized to a level that will help to dissolve the nitrogen bubbles in your body.

**How can I prevent decompression sickness?**

The best way to prevent decompression sickness is to ascend properly. By following the steps outlined above, you can help to reduce your risk of this serious condition.

**Additional tips for safe scuba diving**

In addition to ascending properly, there are a few other things you can do to help ensure a safe scuba diving experience:

* Get certified by a reputable scuba diving organization.
* Dive with a buddy.
* Plan your dives carefully.
* Be aware of your limits.
* Don’t dive beyond your training level.
* Use properly maintained scuba gear.
* Get regular medical checkups.

By following these tips, you can help to minimize your risk of injury or illness while scuba diving.

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