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Today is August 13, 2022

Keep your cool:

5 tips to stay safe in extreme heat

By Abby Berry

Keep your cool:

Stay cool during extreme heat

•    Limit outdoor activity
•    Stay hydrated
•    Check on friends and neighbors who are at greater risk

The dog days of summer typically bring the warmest, sultriest temperatures of the year. Even if you’re a summertime enthusiast, it’s important to stay cool during extreme heat. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control Prevention (CDC), more than 700 people die from extreme heat every year in the U.S. Factors like obesity, age, and alcohol intake can impact how
a person reacts to extreme heat. High humidity also contributes
to heat-related illness because we don’t sweat as quickly —
meaning our bodies can’t release heat as fast — when humidity levels are high. Remember to look after those who may need extra help. People 65 years of age or older are at greater risk of heat-related illness, so check on your senior neighbors and friends. Children under the age of 2 and pets are also more susceptible to heat stroke. Never leave a child or pet in a vehicle, even if only for a minute. If you work outdoors, use a buddy system to monitor your co-workers (and have someone do the same for you!). Heat-induced illness can happen to anyone, even to those who are perfectly healthy. If you’re outdoors during extremely warm weather, monitor how you’re feeling, stay hydrated, and keep an eye on those around you.   


Abby Berry writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. 


Take extra steps to cool off, keep hydrated, and stay informed. Here are five tips
recommended by the CDC to help you stay cool during extremely warm weather:

1.    Stay in an air-conditioned home or building as     much as possible. Limit outdoor activity, especially midday when the sun is hottest. If your home is not air conditioned, call the local health department to locate public facilities or shelters.

2.    If you must be outdoors, wear loose, light-colored clothing and apply sunscreen often.

3.    Drink more water than usual. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink more.

4.    Take cold showers or baths to cool down.

5.    Avoid using the oven or stove to cook. These appliances add heat to your home. Try using the microwave or a slow cooker instead. 

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