What if we created an activity where we invited thousands of people and tightly packed them into confined areas. We then drove large bulky vehicles through their midst whilst tossing various projectiles in their general direction. Sounds like a Mardi Gras parade doesn't it?

If you've been to a Mardi Gras parade then you've been injured at a Mardi Gras parade. Hopefully, not to seriously if you were. However, it's one more way the word " unique" applies to life in Louisiana. I'd have to say that most Mardi Gras parade injuries are confined to the state we call home.

What do you think the most common malady suffered by Mardi Gras parade goers happens to be? Whatever you guessed, you didn't guess sunburn. It's easy to get underdressed and overexposed to the sun when you're having a good time. Many medical professionals say they see worse cases of sunburn during Mardi Gras than they do during the Summer months.

Twisted ankles are another injury that is really close to the top of the list. Most of us are not looking where we are walking and we are walking on uneven roadsides and curbs. A tweak, a twist, or even a break is just one misstep away.

Dehydration is another where Fat Tuesday can turn into Faint Tuesday. This applies to those enjoying the parade behind the barricades as well as those individuals riding and marching in the parade.

This year one of the bigger bugaboos might be the flu bug. Louisiana is still among the nation's leaders in reported flu cases so if you're sick don't hit the parade route. If you're near someone who appears to be sick then move away from them. Don't forget your hand sanitizer that could come in really handy, no pun intended.

Doctors also remind you that getting hit in the head, face, and eye with something as small as a Mardi Gras bead can really cause a sting. For the most part, those injuries are inconsequential but there have been reports of people suffering vision loss after a wayward bead came in contact with the eyes of an unsuspecting reveler.

One more piece of advice along the parade route. It's the produce that gets you. Be aware of larger objects being hoisted from the floats. Often times these projectiles are traveling as fast as a drunken man can throw them.

Now, go out, have fun, bring your insurance card, you might need that at some time along the parade route. Oh, and watch your fingers when you reach down to grab beads off the ground. Those steel toe work boots your Mom wears can leave a nasty mark on those delicate appendages.

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