With Summer in full force it is important that you know how to stay cool during the rising hot temperatures. Getting over-heated can cause a number of serious health issues, and it can cause you to be very sick if you do not take the proper precautions to keep your body cool enough. Too much exposure to heat may result in heat exhaustion, dehydration, heat stroke, and even death. In the last decade the heat has been responsible for over 8,000 deaths in the United States.
Factors that can cause higher-risk your body to over-heat:
- Humidity levels high: Humidity levels rise and fall, however when that humidity rises your body has a more difficult time releasing hear- your sweat will not evaporate as easily. You need to sweat in order to release heat- without that release your body will shut down and this can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
- Alcohol and Drugs: Alcohol and drugs do not mix with exposure to heat. Many drugs will have serious side effects when they impair the body’s ability to cool down properly. In addition consuming alcohol can dehydrate you- it is important that when you are exposed to heat that you drink as much fluids as possible to stay hydrated. Drinking alcohol will defeat your purpose of staying hydrated.
- Health Status and age: People that have underlying illnesses such as heart disease, obesity, diabetes are heavily impacted by high temperatures. They have more problems cooling their bodies as their bodies are already in overdrive to cope with other health factors. Furthermore, the elderly also have a harder time coping with being exposed to hot temperatures.
Ways to Keep Safe and Cool in Extreme Hot Temperatures
- If outdoors make sure you are located in the shade and out of direct sunlight which makes the heat even more extreme.
- If possible during high-risk heat waves- stay indoors in air conditioning or go to shelters which offer places to stay cool and safe.
- Always make sure that on hot days you are drinking enough water and fluids and staying hydrated.
- Dress for the heat- wear sunscreen to prevent sunburn, loose clothing, and avoid dark clothes that reflect the heat.
- Don’t overexert yourself when the temperatures are hot. Be sure to take it easy!
- Utilize water, pools, showers, and baths to keep you cooled off.
- Do not expose yourself or your pets to the heat in vehicles.
- Keep advised for updates on weather and advisories.