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Why its important to still wear a 3mm even when tropical diving

Why its important to still wear a 3mm even when tropical diving

Posted by Dive Pro Jason on on Feb 28th 2024

Scuba diving in tropical waters is an enchanting experience, offering divers a gateway to a world filled with vibrant marine life and colorful coral gardens. The warm, clear waters invite many to believe that additional layers such as wetsuits are unnecessary. However, even in these inviting conditions, wearing a 3mm wetsuit is crucial for several reasons that go beyond mere comfort. Here are three compelling reasons why divers should consider donning a 3mm wetsuit when exploring tropical seas:

  • Thermal Protection: Despite the warm air temperatures typical of tropical destinations, water conducts heat away from the body approximately 25 times faster than air. This means that even in warm water, the body can lose heat quickly, leading to a drop in core temperature over time. A 3mm wetsuit provides the necessary thermal insulation to prevent hypothermia, ensuring that divers can enjoy extended periods underwater without discomfort or risk to their health.
  • Protection from the Sun and Marine Life: A wetsuit serves as a barrier against the sun's harmful UV rays, reducing the risk of sunburn on parts of the body covered by the suit. This is particularly important in tropical regions where the sun can be intense and exposure prolonged. Additionally, the wetsuit offers protection against accidental scrapes or stings from marine life such as jellyfish or coral. The physical barrier can prevent minor injuries, allowing divers to focus on the beauty of the underwater world without concern for these hazards.
  • Enhanced Buoyancy and Streamlining: A 3mm wetsuit offers slight positive buoyancy, which can aid divers in maintaining neutral buoyancy with less effort. This can result in a more enjoyable and energy-efficient dive as divers spend less air and energy on buoyancy control. Furthermore, the smooth surface of a wetsuit helps to streamline the diver in the water, reducing drag and making swimming more efficient. This not only enhances the diving experience but can also contribute to longer bottom times due to reduced air consumption.

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