Posted on Jul 21, 2019, 7 p.m.
The heat has come to make everything all melty hot once again, meaning it is the perfect time to go for that swim or relax in the shade. Before heading outside it is important to know the signs of heat related injuries and a few tips to help stay cool as the temperatures soar, and even scorch in some areas.
Blazing heat can be tough on the body, meaning that heat exhaustion can happen to anyone at any time, especially to those who overexert themselves in the heat. Symptoms of heat exhaustion can include but are not limited to heavy sweating, breathlessness, a fast but weak pulse, dizziness, headache, nausea, and vomiting; if symptoms are severe call for medical assistance right away.
Some people can be at an increased risk for heat exhaustion, such as those with heart disease, high blood pressure, those over the age of 65, infants, children, and those with sunburn because it impairs the cooling mechanism of the skin. Heat exhaustion can escalate to a life threatening state called heat stroke; during this condition the body is no longer able to cool itself down through sweating which can result in damage to major organs.
Symptoms of heat stroke include but are not limited to hot and dry skin, fever higher than 102 degrees fahrenheit, confusion, headache, and unconsciousness; if a person is experiencing heat stroke try to cool them down, get them to shade and into air conditioning if possible, apply cool water with wet cloths, and call for medical assistance right away.
When it is hot outside and you will be outdoors be sure to drink plenty of water, 2 glasses of water per hour is a good rule of thumb. Many enjoy alcohol but it impacts the ability to sweat properly so it is best to avoid it as well as caffeine which is a natural diuretic.
During peak hours when temperatures will be at the highest try to avoid being active outside, rather stick to the shade so your body’s thermostat can have a chance to recover. Try to dress in light coloured and loose fitted breathable clothing that allows sweat to escape, and try to keep your head covered with a hat.
Stay inside and enjoy the A/C, but if you must go outdoors portable fans are fantastic, some even spray mist into your face while fanning you. To cool down quickly try taking a shower/bath, place a cool washcloth on your forehead, or take a dip in a shaded pool.
Sleeping in the heat is hard, a good fan can help as well as sleeping on a wet sheet or cloth. Home remedies suggest putting bedding into bags to place in the freezer for a few hours then put back onto your bed just before sleeping.
Try to avoid eating hot foods as it is already hot outside, eating hot foods will only amplify the effects. Fresh raw fruits and veggies may be the better choice which may help to cool you down and provide some water content.
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This article is not intended to provide medical diagnosis, advice, treatment, or endorsement.