According to the Springfield, MO Red Cross, heat is the top weather-related killer, causing more fatalities than lightning, tornadoes, and hurricanes combined. To practice heat safety, follow these tips:
Drink More Fluids
Drink more fluids, regardless of your activity level. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Bring a reusable water bottle with you to maintain hydration. If you’re at work, you could also bring a pitcher and glass and fill it every morning. Also at our local Academy Sports and Ultramax they carry a product called NUUN. NUUN is a dissolevable tablet full of electrolytes, vitamins and magnesium that is great to keep the body hydrated and full of energy.
If you’re older, be especially careful to drink fluids because the amount of water retained by the body decreases with age.
Avoid salt tablets if possible. If your doctor has you on water pills, ask him or her how much you should drink.
Don’t drink liquids with dehydrating caffeine, alcohol, or large amounts of sugar. Avoid very cold drinks.
At family events and reunions, bring a cooler of cool drinks.
Cut back on exercising; if you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, nonalcoholic fluids each hour.
Keep Your Body Cool
Dress in lightweight light-colored clothing and sun-reflective shirts. Wear loose clothing.
Wear wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses. Keep a stash of hats on hand for friends and family! Baseball camps work best vs a straw hat because straw hats still have holes that UV rays can get in to.
According to the CDC, fans may provide comfort but they do not prevent heat-related illnesses when the temperature is in the high 90s. Take a cool shower or bath, or move to an air-conditioned place to cool off.
Stay in the shade, especially between 11 A.M. and 3 P.M.
Avoid strenuous activities during the heat of the day.
NEVER leave anyone or animals in closed, parked vehicle, even with the windows down.
To feel cooler, eat cooler. Reduce your protein intake.
Open your house to the breeze after sunset and leave it open until dawn.
In the early morning, draw the shades before the temperature starts to rise.
Protect Yourself from the Sun
Don’t get too much sun. Sunburn makes it difficult for your body to dissipate heat.
As well as a hat and sunglasses, wear sunscreen SPF 15 or higher. The most effective products say “broad spectrum” or “UVA/UVB” on their labels. Most should have Titanium in them for better protection. Make sure to reapply every hour.
Be aware of heavy sweating, hot and dry skin, rapid pulse, pale or clammy skin, and cramps in your leg or abdomen muscles. All could be signs of heat disorder.
If you are older, it’s wise to keep medical information readily available, including phone numbers of health care providers and copies of your prescription and health insurance cards.
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