The temperatures are starting to rise across the nation. No matter where you live, you are probably getting a bit excited about spending some more time in the great outdoors over the coming months.
Even if you’re staying close to home, it’s important to consider how the transition from cold to warm weather can impact your body. Here is why heat can be an issue and a few of the ways you can prepare for the warmer months to come so that you can feel your best and stay as healthy as possible.
Heat-Related Illness Can Be Serious
According to the Centers for Disease Control, heat-related illnesses and deaths are entirely preventable, but over 600 people die annually from extreme heat. While anyone can succumb to illness when the temperatures rise, some groups have a higher risk than others. Among the groups that should use particular caution are people with chronic diseases, those ages 65 and older, children under the age of 2, and people with mental illness.
Prepare Yourself for Warm Weather Activities
The attractiveness of the great outdoors is undeniable. But, when the mercury rises, it makes sense to use a bit of extra caution to keep yourself and your loved ones safe. Here are a few things you can put on your list this Spring and Summer:
Check the Weather in Your Area
Check your favorite news app or local station for an updated forecast. You should be able to get hourly forecasts for your area that include high temperatures, precipitation chances, and any health and safety warnings.
Schedule Your Activities Carefully
Whenever possible, avoid scheduling your outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day, which is usually between noon and 3 p.m. Instead, try to get outdoors earlier in the day or the early evening when it is cooler.
Choose the Right Type of Clothing
Wear loose-fitting, light-colored, lightweight clothing. If you can, choose fabric that has moisture-wicking properties. Also, protect your skin with sunscreen, your eyes with sunglasses, and wear a hat or visor to give you some extra shade.
Drink plenty of water (not coffee or soda) before, during, and after outdoor activity – even if you don’t feel thirsty. Dehydration is incredibly dangerous. Some of the signs of dehydration that you can watch for include:
- Muscle cramps
- Dark-colored urine
- Dry, cool skin
Listen to Your Body
When it’s hot outside, take frequent breaks to give your body a rest. Either find some shade or, better yet, go indoors to cool off in the A/C.
In addition to dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke are common problems when the weather turns. Call 911 if you or a loved one experiences a high fever, shallow breathing, a fast, weak pulse, or extreme confusion.
Protecting yourself and your loved ones from a heat-related illness takes planning, but doing this is vital as the temperatures begin to soar. MedTrust is a mobile healthcare provider based in South Carolina that focuses on improving patient outcomes through excellence in service. Contact us now to learn more about our services or to start a conversation about joining our team.