Monday, March 30, 2015

Summer Heat Safety Tips

Summer heat can be dangerous - even deadly - if you don't take the proper precautions. Find out how to properly prepare for and protect yourself and your loved ones from soaring temperatures.

Basic Summer Heat Safety Tips

Everyone should follow these basic heat safety tips in order to avoid the dangers of heat exposure. Keep these suggestions in mind:

  • During the hottest hours of the day, stay inside. If possible stay inside an air-conditioned building. The hottest hours of the day are typically from mid morning to mid afternoon.
  • Dress lightly, and when sleeping, use lightweight, breathable covers.
  • Drink plenty of water and other fluids. According to the Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stress page provided by the Texas A & M AgriLife Extension Service, when temperatures climb above 90 degrees, it's important to drink at least a gallon of liquid per day, preferably water. Those who are overweight and in humid conditions needing even more.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol and beverages that are carbonated or contain caffeine when temperatures are high, as they can lead to dehydration.
  • Keep blinds and curtains closed from morning until the late afternoon to block extra direct heat from sunlight.
  • Move your exercise routine to early morning or later in the evening.
  • Never ever leave a person or a pet in the car in hot conditions while you run to do a quick errand. People and animals can succumb to heat exposure and death very quickly in a hot car. Cars can become overheated quickly and when overheated become like ovens. It's never safe.
  • Properly supervise children during outdoor play, being sure to monitor them closely and frequently.
  • Seek medical care right away if you become nauseous, start vomiting or experience cramps.
  • Stay on the lowest level of your home.
  • Use a fan. Don't place the fan directly in front of a window because it may push hot air in. Try placing the fan so that it blows in the room and out the window instead.
  • Use small appliances like slow cookers and tabletop grills rather than your traditional oven or stove to keep kitchen heat to a minimum.
  • Verify that seat belts and car seat restraints are not too hot before buckling yourself or anyone else into a car.
Recognizing Heat-Related Health Problems

It's important to know how to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion and heat exposure. After all, even if you're taking all necessary precautions, problems can occur. For example, if you happen to be at the park and forget the time, someone may become overheated. Heat exhaustion signs will appear first, and then heat stroke signs. Symptoms, as described by the Centers for Disease Control, are detailed below.

Heat Exhaustion

The signs of heat exhaustion may include the following:
  • Breathing that is shallow and fast
  • Clammy skin
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Excessive sweating
  • Fainting
  • Headache
  • Loss of color in skin
  • Nausea
  • Pale complexion
  • Pulse that is fast and weak
  • Skin that feels moist and cool (when touched)
  • Sweating
  • Tiredness
  • Vomiting
If you see any of the above exhaustion signs, get out of the heat immediately. The person experiencing symptoms should be given plenty of cool fluids and be wiped own with cool cloths.

Heat Stroke

The signs of major heat exposure, also known as heat stroke, include the following:
  • Dizziness
  • Extremely high body temperature (over 103 degrees F)
  • Headache that is throbbing
  • Lack of sweating
  • Nausea
  • Rapid pulse that is strong
  • Red skin that is hot and dry (when touched)
Heat stroke always requires medical attention. If you see any of the above exposure signs, get the person out of the heat immediately and take them to the nearest hospital.

Aside from us, there are also our Pets. They need attention too during summer.

Being aware of summer safety for animals could mean the difference between having a happy summer with your furry friends or having one where your pets suffer from preventable seasonal accidents, injuries or possible death.

As summer approaches, thoughts turn to outdoor activities and fun in the sun for everyone, including family pets. Knowing how to protect your animal companions from the dangers of summer is the responsibility of every pet owner. Taking simple precautions and safeguards will help ensure your pets have a happy, fun-filled, safe summer.

Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

Overheating, resulting in heat exhaustion and possible heat stroke, can be deadly to your furry companion. Knowing the warning signs of these and what to do if your animal is in distress could save your pet's life.


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