For the past few years we in the United States have experienced extreme heat during the summer months. In 2010 extreme heat dominated much of the eastern seaboard, resulting in the 4th hottest summer on record dating back to 1895. Currently much of the country is experiencing oppressive heat and humidity because of what meteorologist call a “heat dome”. Current temperatures and heat indexes across much of the eastern United States are forecasted to be in the triple digits. Not only does the present a problem for the elderly but it is a huge concern for people who are spending time outside. People who are outside in the heat generally first start experiencing heat cramps. As it progresses severe headache, nausea, and feeling of weakness are signs someone is experiencing heat exhaustion. If still exposed to extreme heat beyond this point the most serious and potentially fatal heat related illness is heat stroke.
Here is some advice from Doctors and Experts to help you deal with these extreme hot summers’ days
- Try to avoid being outside for the hottest part of the day which is between 11 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. Wear white (and lighter colors) light weight clothing because is reflect sunlight. Another tip is not to wear 100 percent cotton clothing because it tends to hold sweat, making it harder for your body to cool off.
- Thirst isn't always a good sign of hydration status. In children, the thirst mechanism isn't fully developed, and in seniors, the sense of thirst has diminished. By the time your brain signals thirst, you may have lost 1 percent of your body weight — about 3 cups of sweat for a 150-pound person.
- Urine color is an important indicator of hydration. A well-hydrated person's urine will be almost clear. Darker colors indicate less hydration. Not having to urinate at all after intense workouts is a warning sign of real dehydration.
- If you exercise for less than 90 minutes at a time, cool water (40 degrees F) is all you need to replace fluids. You should drink about 16 ounces of water two hours before exercising, eight ounces every 15 to 20 minutes during exercise, and then at least another 16 ounces after finishing. Although it is popular to take bottled water with you, just with-in a few minutes the water is hot. You can use a Neo Vas and Neo Tote insulated steel water bottle to keep the water cool. Not only will it keep your water cool it is reusable and an eco-friendly alturnative to plastic water bottles.
If you would like more information on how to keep cool and prevent heat related illness during the hot summer months visit the CDC Extreme Heat Tips.