Trying to remain cool during these summer days is becoming more difficult to do, but not entirely impossible.
“The heat affects different people differently, and those people who are at greatest risk are infants, elderly and those people who have specific health problems,” said Renette Wardlow, a human development specialist with University of Missouri Extension.
People who suffer from conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, arteriosclerosis, high blood pressure, Parkinson’s disease and stroke are at risk of developing heat related illnesses. Also at risk are persons who are overweight, have burns or skin diseases and alcoholics.
Here are a few ways that will help a person escape the summer heat.
· Limit physical activities during the hottest part of the day.
· Walk on the shady side of the street.
· Park cars in the shade. Roll car windows down and allow care to cool before entering.
· Dress for coolness indoors and out. Lightweight, light-colored, loose fitting clothes are most comfortable.
· In homes without air conditioning, open windows at night and create cross ventilation.
· During the day, close windows and draw shades on sunny sides.
· Drink plenty of liquids. Unless on a salt-free or fluid restricted diet, drink at least a gallon of liquid a day when outside temperatures reach 95 degrees and no air-conditioner is available.
· Eat a well-balanced diet despite the heat, but avoid cooking and eating hot and heavy meals. Reach for the fruits, fresh vegetables and salads.
“Individuals living alone should have daily contact with someone. In case of extreme heat, community programs usually open air-conditioned buildings for those long sweltering summer afternoons and nights,” said Wardlow.
University of Missouri Extension improves people’s lives through relevant, responsive and reliable research-based education from University of Missouri. Wardlow can be reached at the Christian County Extension Center in Ozark, Mo. at (417) 581-3558.