Don’t Let The Next Heat Wave Kill You

Don’t Let The Next Heat Wave Kill You

Stay Cool In the Heat Of The Summer

The danger with too much heat should never be underestimated. Heat can kill in a remarkably short space of time and with relatively little warning and yet just by taking a few simple precautions like getting plenty of fluids, staying out of the midday sun and investing in an electric fan to keep you cool, you can avoid a catastrophe.

According to the NHS Heat Wave Plan for England, during one spell of hot weather in 2003, the number of deaths of people over the age of 75 in London alone rose by a massive 60 percent. During that same year, Northern France suffered 15,000 additional deaths; it’s important to note that these deaths are on top of what would normally be expected at that time of year. Those most at risk from the effects of the heat exhaustion and sunstroke or heatstroke include the following:

  • Small children and babies
  • The elderly who do not sweat as much and are less likely to feel the heat or notice the effects of heat exhaustion
  • The sick or infirm who may be unable to get out of the sun as easily and whose bodies are less able to cope with higher temperatures
  • The mentally ill or those suffering from dementia
  • People on certain types of medication
  • Those living on their own or who are isolated
  • Those who live in caravans, chalets and mobile homes or in top floor flats where the heat is likely to be more intense
  • People working in places where the temperature is already high, such as in kitchens, bakeries and foundries
  • Anyone, anywhere who finds themselves in a building during a heat wave where there is no air conditioning and no cooling fan

What is Heat exhaustion and Sunstroke/Heatstroke?

Heat exhaustion occurs when the body is starting to feel the effects of too much heat, symptoms of which can include headache, nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, slow pulse and dehydration. If nothing is done to alleviate the problem, replace fluids and cool the body down, then it can very quickly lead to sunstroke or heatstroke. This is a serious condition where the body is no longer able to regulate temperature so cannot cool itself. Body temperature then rises rapidly leading to the possibility of hallucinations, confusion, convulsions and loss of consciousness.

How to cope with a summer heat wave:

  • Drink plenty of water, even if you don’t feel particularly thirsty, this is vitally important in order to replace body fluids and prevent dehydration
  • Avoid drinking too much alcohol which increases the risk of dehydration
  • Don’t overeat or indulge in hot and spicy foods, and opt for lighter colder meals instead
  • Avoid hot baths and showers
  • Close curtains or blinds that get direct sunlight and turn on an electric fan to cool the room
  • Never leave children, pets or an elderly or disabled person alone in a car for any length of time, the heat can be intense and quickly lead to dehydration, heat exhaustion and even death
  • Wear loose and comfortable clothing
  • Wear sunscreen and a sunhat when exposed to the sun
  • Try to stay inside when the sun is at its hottest, between 11 am and 3 pm

During the summer months even a short spell of heat can have disastrous consequences, indeed most deaths occur during the first couple of days of the temperature rising. Don’t take risks with yourself or loved ones. Be sure to check on elderly relatives, neighbors and friends regularly and make sure they have plenty of fluids and a fan to cool them down.

Heat waves can come at any time during the summer months but according to experts, climate change means that heat waves and hot spells are likely to become more common so it’s better to be informed now and therefore better prepared in future.

Staying cool in the summer is vital for some people. A great way to stay cool is to buy electric fans to create a cool breeze through your home. For more information about fans please come and visit our site.


About The Author
David_Mcevoy writes about sun exposure.
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