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7 effective strategies to protect yourself from extreme heat waves THIS Summer

As temperatures soar, safeguarding yourself from extreme heat is vital. Discover seven essential strategies to beat the heat and stay safe this summer

7 effective strategies to protect yourself from extreme heat waves THIS Summer ATG
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First Published Apr 20, 2024, 7:30 AM IST

As temperatures rise and heatwaves become more frequent and intense, it's crucial to take proactive measures to safeguard yourself and your loved ones from the scorching heat. Extreme heat not only poses discomfort but also presents serious health risks such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Here are seven essential strategies to help you stay safe and cool during the hottest months of the year:

7 effective strategies to protect yourself from extreme heat waves THIS Summer ATG

  1. Stay Hydrated: Hydration is paramount during hot weather. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, even if you don't feel thirsty. Avoid beverages that can dehydrate you, such as alcohol and caffeinated drinks. Electrolyte-rich drinks like coconut water or sports drinks can also help replenish lost minerals due to sweating. Keep a reusable water bottle with you wherever you go to ensure you can hydrate regularly.

  2. Dress Appropriately: Choose lightweight, loose-fitting clothing in light colors, which reflect sunlight rather than absorbing it. Opt for breathable fabrics like cotton or linen that allow air to circulate around your body, aiding in sweat evaporation and cooling. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses can also provide additional protection from the sun's harmful UV rays.

  3. Seek Shade and Cool Spaces: Whenever possible, stay indoors during the hottest parts of the day, typically between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If you must be outside, seek shade under trees, umbrellas, or awnings. Plan outdoor activities for early morning or late afternoon when temperatures are lower. Take advantage of air-conditioned public spaces such as libraries, shopping malls, or community centers to escape the heat.

  4. Use Fans and Air Conditioning Wisely: Fans can help circulate air and create a cooling breeze, but they are less effective during extreme heat. If you have access to air conditioning, use it to lower indoor temperatures and reduce humidity levels. Close windows and curtains during the day to block out sunlight and prevent heat from entering your home. Consider using a programmable thermostat to optimize energy usage and maintain a comfortable indoor environment.

  5. Cool Down Your Body: Take regular cool showers or baths to lower your body temperature. Use damp towels or ice packs on pulse points such as your wrists, neck, and forehead to help you cool down quickly. Alternatively, fill a basin with cool water and soak your feet for immediate relief from the heat. Avoid intense physical activity during peak heat hours, and if you must exercise, do so in the early morning or late evening when temperatures are cooler.

  6. Protect Vulnerable Populations: Keep a close eye on infants, young children, elderly individuals, and those with chronic health conditions, as they are more susceptible to heat-related illnesses. Ensure they have access to cool environments, plenty of fluids, and appropriate clothing. Never leave children or pets unattended in parked vehicles, as temperatures can soar to dangerous levels within minutes, even with the windows cracked open.

  7. Stay Informed and Be Prepared: Stay updated on weather forecasts and heat advisories issued by local authorities. Sign up for emergency alerts to receive timely notifications about extreme heat events in your area. Create a heat emergency plan for your household, including designated cooling shelters and emergency contacts. Keep essential supplies on hand, such as non-perishable food, water, medications, and first aid supplies, in case of power outages or other emergencies.

By following these seven strategies, you can minimize the risks associated with extreme heat waves and enjoy a safe and comfortable summer season. Remember to prioritize your health and well-being by staying hydrated, seeking shade, and taking preventive measures to beat the heat.

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