7 Tips to Keep Cool in a Heat Wave

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Health Matters – 7 Tips to Keep Cool in a Heat Wave


HEADLINE: Killer Heat Wave Moves to Northeast, MidAtlantic

SUMMARY: As fires ravage Arizona and sweltering heat settles into many areas across the country, a new study published in the journal Climate Change by Stanford scientists finds that large areas of the globe will warm up so quickly that even the coolest summers will be hotter than the hottest summers of the past 50 years.

Several deaths have been reported and the National Weather Service warned that the heat wave would bring temperatures in the 90s and triple digits with high humidity to the East Coast and Southeast for several days.

Story Link from ABC News 
ANALYSIS by Dr. Don Donahue, Director, Firestorm Healthcare Response Team

Many factors influence weather: La Niña, El Niño, the Jet Stream, cyclic warming and cooling trends, major volcanic eruptions, and the impact of mankind. Regardless of the cause, it is hot in many areas of the U.S. Thursday afternoon saw the mercury hit 106°F on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Many cultures shift daytime activities to the evening and night to avoid the heat of midday. The Spanish tradition of “siesta” and similar practices in other Mediterranean cultures are well known examples of man’s accommodation of nature.

Regions that do not typically endure extremes of heat often do not adjust well to high temperatures. You can reduce the risk of heat injury by avoiding strenuous outdoor activities, increasing awareness of the danger, and taking simple preventive measures.

7 Tips to Keep Cool in a Heat Wave

1. Wear loose fitting, lighter colored clothing.

2. If you don’t have air-conditioning, arrange to spend at least parts of the day in an air-conditioned environment: a shopping mall, public libraries, museums, movie theatres, mass transit, or other public spaces that are cool.

3. Fill a spray bottle with water and keep it in the refrigerator for a quick refreshing spray to your face after being outdoors.

4. Drink plenty of water along with sports drinks or other sources of electrolytes. Avoid drinks containing alcohol, caffeine, or a lot of sugar, as these can accelerate dehydration.

5. Remember that the elderly, infants, and those with chronic illnesses can dehydrate more easily and are more susceptible to heat-related illnesses. Observe for signs of heat-related illness such as dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and lack of perspiration in hot environments. If you suspect heat injury, seek medical help immediately.

6. Watch infants for signs of heat-related illness such as not producing tears when crying or fewer diaper changes.

7. Pets also need protection from dehydration and heat-related illnesses. Give them plenty of water.

What’s your best tip for keeping cool?

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