The forecast for my neck of the woods is bleak for this 2nd week of summer. Temperatures in the 100′s, humid, and dry. These are the days I dread the most. Not only is it hot outside, but it’s also pretty miserable inside — even with the a/c on full blast. So, in honor of this heat wave that’s about to strike half the country, I felt I should dole out some advice for the hot days to come because this kind of heat isn’t just annoying, it can be dangerous.
- If possible, stay indoors in an air-conditioned environment on hot, humid days, especially if an air-pollution alert is in effect.
- If you don’t have air conditioning or access to an air-conditioned environment, take cool showers or baths and keep shades or curtains drawn during the day. Use table or ceiling fans to circulate air.
- Avoid exercising outdoors.
- Dress in light colors and breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen. Synthetic materials like polyester can trap heat.
- Drink plenty of liquids, especially water. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.
- If you venture into the hot sun, wear sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat to provid
- Never leave children in cars. Your car is like an oven, even with the windows cracked. On a 78 degree day, your car can heat up to over 90 degrees when parked in the shade, imagine how hot it can get when parked in the sun!
- Get immediate medical help if you or someone you’re with develops symptoms of any heat-related illness including confusion, lethargy, agitation, intense muscle aches, fever, nausea, or convulsions.
For those of use with pets, it’s also important to know how to keep your animals cool on hot days.
- Just like the advice above, never leave your pet in the car.
- Provide plenty of shade.
- And water. Throw in a few ice cubes in the water to keep it cooler longer.
- Shave off that winter coat.
- Avoid hot asphalt. Walk dogs only in the morning, or after the sun has gone down.
- Know what to look for in an overheated pet. Symptoms of an overheated pet include difficulty breathing, excessive panting, drooling, increased heart rate, weakness and even collapse.
Follow the above advice, and stay cool out there!