You can prevent or control underwater problems by 1) relaxing while you dive, 2 ) keeping close watch on your air supply and 3) diving within your limitations. Of the few problems that do occur under water, the most likely are overexertion, running out of or low on air, regulator free flow and entanglement.

In Section Two, you learned to prevent overexertion by moving and breathing slowly and deliberately, and by pacing yourself: You also learned that if you do get overexerted, stop all activity, rest, relax and breathe slowly until you restore your normal breathing pattern.

Underwater, overexertion can give you a feeling of air starvation because breathing resistance through the regulator increases as you go deeper. Overexertion i` the problem, but it may feel like your regulator isn't delivering enough air: Actually, you're demanding more air than it can deliver - as you recall, you prevent overexertion (and air starvation) by avoiding strenuous activity and by pacing yourself'.

Running out of air is probably the easiest problem to avoid, and air stoppage due to a malfunction is extremely remote (more about this in a moment. To keep from running excessively low on or out, make; habit of checking your SPG frequently. Obviously, your SPG only works if you look at it.

Possible surface problems include overexertion, leg muscle cramps and choking on inhaled water. You've already learned about handling overexertion and as you recall, if you choke on water, you hold your regulator or snorkel in place and cough through it keep it in you mouth, and keep your mask on. Swallowing sometimes helps relieve choking, too. Be sure you have sufficient buoyancy, because coughing lowers your lung volume, decreasing your tendency to float.

If you have a problem at the surface, immediately establish buoyancy by either inflating your BCD or dropping your weights. Let your equipment do the work - having to swim, tread water or otherwise having to fight to stay above water exhausts you quickly. Don't hesitate to discard your weights if You can't stay up with your BCD; weights are easily replaced.
 


Stop, think, then act. Need help? Ask! Whistle, wave and yell. It's the smart, safe to do. Get help when You need it, before a small problem becomes a big one, and you make it easier on yourself and other divers. Dive masters will tell you it's not the people who ask for assistance who give them gray hair - it's those who need it and don't ask.

Buddy breathe with a single regulator: Buddy breathing, which is sharing a single second stage between two divers, was once a standard air-sharing method, but became less and less favored as a viable option over the last 20 years. 

Alternate air sources have made buddy breathing unnecessary, along with the fact that buddy breathing is a moderately complex motor skill to perform in an emergency.If you're deeper than 12 metres/40 feet and there's no alternate air source available, buddy breathing may be an option if you and your buddy remain calm, and if you're both trained and practiced with it. Once you begin buddy breathing, you and your buddy should continue all the way to without attempting to switch to another out-of-air option. Your instructor may have you practice buddy breathing, but keep in mind that sharing air with an alternate air source is far more preferable and makes buddy breathing an unnecessary option. Make a buoyant ascent.

You're too deep for a controlled emergency swimming ascent and you're too far for your buddy to help you. You can still make it to the surface, though the situation isn't ideal. You make a buoyant emergency ascent,. just like a controlled emergency swimming ascent, except you drop your weights. You look up and exhale continuously, making the alaahhh sound into your regulator as you rise to the surface. You're going to exceed a safe ascent rate, and that has some serious risks - so use this method only when you doubt you can reach the surface any other way. 

You can flare out to create drag and help slow your ascent if you start to rise faster than necessary to reach the surface safely.After reaching the surface using any of these options, remember that you ma ,y need to inflate your BCD orally to establish positive buoyancy. Remember to discuss out-of-air emergency options with your buddy as part of planning your dive, and stay close together so you can assist each other if necessary, especially as you go deeper. Look after one another, watching your air supplies. breathing patterns, and time and depth limits. By remaining alert and monitoring each other, you can avoid air supply and other problems.

Buddy breathe with a single regulator: Buddy breathing, which is sharing a single second stage between two divers, was once a standard air-sharing method, but became less and less favored as a viable option over the last 20 years. 

Alternate air sources have made buddy breathing unnecessary, along with the fact that buddy breathing is a moderately complex motor skill to perform in an emergency.If you're deeper than 12 metres/40 feet and there's no alternate air source available, buddy breathing may be an option if you and your buddy remain calm, and if you're both trained and practiced with it. Once you begin buddy breathing, you and your buddy should continue all the way to without attempting to switch to another out-of-air option. Your instructor may have you practice buddy breathing, but keep in mind that sharing air with an alternate air source is far more preferable and makes buddy breathing an unnecessary option. Make a buoyant ascent.

You're too deep for a controlled emergency swimming ascent and you're too far for your buddy to help you. You can still make it to the surface, though the situation isn't ideal. You make a buoyant emergency ascent,. just like a controlled emergency swimming ascent, except you drop your weights. You look up and exhale continuously, making the alaahhh sound into your regulator as you rise to the surface. You're going to exceed a safe ascent rate, and that has some serious risks - so use this method only when you doubt you can reach the surface any other way. 

You can flare out to create drag and help slow your ascent if you start to rise faster than necessary to reach the surface safely.After reaching the surface using any of these options, remember that you ma ,y need to inflate your BCD orally to establish positive buoyancy. Remember to discuss out-of-air emergency options with your buddy as part of planning your dive, and stay close together so you can assist each other if necessary, especially as you go deeper. Look after one another, watching your air supplies. breathing patterns, and time and depth limits. By remaining alert and monitoring each other, you can avoid air supply and other problems.