High temperatures combined with high humidity create the climate for heat stroke and heat exhaustion in people and animals. Elders, babies, overweight and chronically ill people are especially vulnerable to heat illness.
The Snohomish Health District urges you watch yourself and others for symptoms of heat-related illness, and beat the heat safely with these tips:
- Drink water – cool water is best. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty – sip 2 to 4 glasses of water every hour. Avoid drinks containing alcohol, caffeine, or a lot of sugar. Put out extra water for pets.
- Stay indoors in an air-conditioned place, such as a library, senior center, a movie theater or an indoor shopping mall. At home, pull curtains or shades to keep rooms cool. Use window stops to prevent children from falling out, and move fans out of their reach. Check railings for safety on decks and porches.
- Dress light – lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing helps your body cool off.
- Visit your elderly neighbors and watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
Stay safe outdoors
- If you head to the lake or pool, make sure that an adult keeps on eye on young children – even if they know how to swim or if a lifeguard is on hand. Lifejackets can add to safety, but an adult watcher is still needed.
- Outdoors, wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, and use sunscreen that will block both kinds of ultraviolet light, UVA and UVB.
- Slow down – cut back on strenuous activity, and take frequent rest breaks in the shade.
- NEVER leave children or pets in a closed, parked vehicle.
· Washington State Department of Health: http://www.doh.wa.gov/
· Centers for Disease Control & Prevention heat stress pages: http://www.cdc.gov/
· National Weather Service forecasts and weather alerts: http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/sew