7 Tips for Preventing Heat-Related Illness and Keeping your Cool when it’s HOT!
Summer is here, and so is the season for heavy sweating, heat strokes, heat cramps, and heat exhaustion. Continuous exposure to summer heatwaves can be hazardous. It might even damage the brain and other vital organs of your body. That’s why; it’s important to protect your body from soaring temperatures and keep it cool to prevent heat-related illness.
Signs and Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion
Possible signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
- Heavy sweating
- Weak, rapid pulse
- Low blood pressure
- Muscle cramps
While it is common for people to suffer from a heat-related illness during the sweltering summer months, heat illness is largely preventable.
Follow these tips to protect yourself from hot weather:
1. Stay Cool
The best way to stay cool during summers is by staying indoors as much as possible. If possible, keep yourself in an air-conditioned area – and try always to maintain ideal body temperature. Taking a cool shower or bath is also a perfect way to keep your body temperature under control.
2. Hydrate Well
During summers, it is more than essential to stay well hydrated all day long. Sweat steals away salt and other vital minerals from your body, making it weak and vulnerable to dehydration and stomach cramps. Thus, it becomes permeable to replenish the lost minerals and salt through water, fruit juices, and other sports drink. So, drink a lot of water when the weather is hot and steer away from sugary and alcoholic beverages as they can make you lose more body fluids.
Remember, if you are diabetic, hypertensive, or suffering from other chronic health conditions, you must speak to your healthcare provider before drinking sports drinks or taking salt tablets.
3. Avoid Hot, Oily Food
Hot, spicy, and oily foods add heat to your body and cause a rise in your body temperature. They are best avoided in the summer months. Instead, you should snack on fresh fruits and water-based vegetables that help to hydrate your body and have an overall cooling effect.
4. Schedule Outdoor Activities Carefully
To prevent heat stroke and heat related illness, it is best to avoid stepping out in the sun when the temperatures are soaring high, especially during the afternoon. Limit your outdoor activities to when it’s cooler, that is morning and evening. If you have to step out in the sun, cover your entire body properly with a piece of cloth to protect yourself from the sun. Also, try to rest often in the shade to give your body a chance to recover.
5. Wear Light, Comfortable Clothes and Sunscreen
Choose light-colored, loose-fitting cotton clothes that allow heat to pass through and help you stay comfortable during summer months. Whenever you step out, keep your head covered with a wide-brimmed hat or umbrella and wear sunglasses to protect your eyes too. Also, don’t forget to use a wide-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 or more to protect your skin from harmful UV radiations of the sun. Apply sunscreen generously and reapply it every half an hour for complete protection.
6. Stay Informed
Keep yourself updated with extreme heat alerts and safety tips to prevent heat-related illness. Look for updates from weather channels for the most trustworthy alerts.
7. Watch Those at High Risk
While all of us are vulnerable to heat strokes and illness, some people are at higher risk than others.
- Infants and young children
- People over 65 years of age
- Those who are overweight
- Those who work in the sun or exercise rigorously
- People who suffer from chronic health conditions – heart disease, high blood pressure, or who take medications for depression, insomnia, or poor circulation
If you have infants or older people at home, watch them closely for signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion. Also, don’t forget to spread the word. Use your social media handles to share these tips with your loved ones and help protect them from the upcoming hot weather illness.
For more information about heat-related illness, or if you believe you are suffering from a heat-related condition, make an appointment with EPIC Health today by requesting one online through our website now or calling us at 248-336-4000.