“Surviving” heat wave: How to stay cool during hot summer
We all love summer and nice weather, but heat waves can be really unpleasant, and even dangerous. And it’s really important to remember – everyone is equally exposed to risk, regardless of age. Of course, there’re groups more prone to risk, elders and children, people with chronic diseases, but here we talk about general recommendations during extremely hot days, when temperatures get over 30°C.
Try to stay in air-conditioned spaces as much as you’re able. Make sure difference in temperature outside and inside is not more than 10°C, so that you don’t feel worse when you go outside. Don’t just rely on fans to cool you down, especially in the cities.
Draw blinds in rooms where you don’t spend time, so that the heat doesn’t enter unnecessarily. If you can work in a dark space, select this option.
Limit your stay outside as much as you can. Plan your day carefully so you spend time outdoors during cooler parts of day – early mornings, late afternoons, dusk. Avoid spending time outside between 11 AM and 6 PM.
Wear light clothes made of natural materials. Cotton and linen are recommended, avoid synthetic so your skin can breathe. Try to wear loose-fitting clothes, because tight attire can raise your body temperature. Choose lighter tones, because it’s well-known fact that darker colors attract sunlight.
Wear hats or caps so your head is not exposed to the sun. Pick lighter colors and materials, to better reflect sunlight.
Footwear should be as simple and lightweight as possible, so your foot can breathe. If you can’t wear open-toes shoes where you work, change before entering the office. Also, choose natural materials – leather, linen…
Pick function over style. Wear fewer accessories, metal jewelry and keep your hair up.
Be sure to apply sun protection especially if you spend time outdoors. Follow instructions on packaging and use as indicated – reapplying is for your own good.
Quick cold or lukewarm showers also cools you down and enable you to retain optimal body temperature, so as not to endanger your health.
Make a system with neighbors or friends – text or call in certain intervals to make sure everything is ok. Do the shopping for older family members and neighbors – it’s easier for younger people.
Avoid cooking – east fresh food, salads and fruits.
Drink a lot of water, more than usual. Avoid soft drinks and alcohol. You’ll be even thirstier if you drink something with sugar. Carry a water bottle regardless of the fact it’ll get warm. Don’t wait to get thirsty, because it means you’re close to dehydrating. Muscle cramps are the first sign of it. Try not to drink ice-cold water, because it’s a shock for your body. Take a sip often to make sure you’re hydrated properly.
If you in training, disregard the age, and schedule workouts early in the morning or late in the afternoon, when temperature is not as high. Check on your teammates and workout buddies. Track local weather news and ask for help if necessary.
If you’re wearing a face mask outdoors and have trouble breathing due to heat, put a 6 feet distance and remove the mask. Take sips of water and wash your face.
For spending hot summer days in nature, choose locations where you can easily stay out of the sun – park, forest or near an air-conditioned space. Be near water, so you can freshen up at any moment.
Take care of yourself and others, and don’t forget your pets. Help if someone needs assistance. Don’t hesitate to ask for help. And let’s repeat once again, just in case: don’t wait to get thirsty to drink water, because staying hydrated is extremely important.