Here are the 8 most common hazards you may encounter while in the field:
- Structural Hazards
- Electrical Hazards
- Electromagnetic Fields
- Carbon Monoxide
- Fiberglass Insulation
Mouseover to read more. Get more information from the Safety Pamphlet and the Investigator’s Guide to Paranormal Safety, and order your personal Safety Kit.
General Guidelines for Staying Healthy
- People with a cold or otherwise comprised immune system should not investigate. Stay home and rest. The team and clients don’t want to get sick either.
- Drink plenty of water. Investigating can be intense, so your body will produce more cortisol in response to the stress. Cortisol is a stress hormone that causes increased heart rate and respiration, as well as weakening the immune system. When you do not drink enough water during a paranormal investigation, you may experience a “hangover” the day after the investigation due to this increase in cortisol. A good rule of thumb is to drink four to six ounces of water for every hour of investigating. If you actually get thirsty while investigating, double this amount.
- Getting a flu shot will reduce the likelihood of getting influenza or a cold. Even if you do contract the flu, studies show the influenza vaccine can lessen the severity and duration.
- Keep your DTP (diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus) shot up-to-date, as well. Whooping cough has reached the highest incident rates since the 1960s, and it can be very dangerous, particularly in people with weakened immune systems.
- Use a hand sanitizer with alcohol every hour. This will greatly reduce your risk of growing ill after an investigation. Investigators often don’t know who may have been at a location before them or what, if any, illnesses they may have had. Using sanitizer could ward off a nasty illness. Alcohol will kill bacteria and fungi both by breaking down (denaturing) the cell’s processes.
- Cover open sores and those already scabbed over with an antibacterial ointment and a bandage.
- Immediately remove and wash your clothes and shower after an investigation. You can’t be certain what fungi, virus or bacteria came home with you on your clothes/skin.
- In areas where mold, dust and animal waste might be an issue, use a disposable N95 respirator (10 packs are about $15 at most home supply stores). In addition to the N95 designation, the mask must fit well so contaminated air can’t seep around the edges. Wearing a mask in these areas will reduce the chances of contracting a respiratory infection by 90 to 95%. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Take along a carbon monoxide detector. Not all homes have them or place them where they are most needed. Place detectors near any stoves or furnaces. CO emissions can sometimes rise quickly. When you are investigating, you need something to warn you there is a colorless, odorless gas about.
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