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    Beat the Heat: Tips for Staying Cool in the Summer

    Outdoor activities, vacations, and beach trips are all staples of summertime fun. After all, who doesn’t love soaking up the sun and enjoying some warm weather?

    However, the summer often also brings soaring temperatures and intense summer heat waves. Many people struggle to stay cool in these conditions and may even be at risk for heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), extreme heat causes more than 600 deaths yearly in the United States alone. In addition, heat-related illnesses can also lead to hospitalization and other medical emergencies.

    In this blog post, we will discuss some helpful tips and advice for staying cool during the hot summer months and avoiding heat-related illnesses.

    Tip 1: Stay Hydrated

    It’s easy to become dehydrated in high temperatures, especially when engaging in outdoor activities or exercising.

    Make sure to drink plenty of water and avoid sugary drinks, which can cause dehydration. Keep a refillable water bottle with you whenever you go outside and sip on it frequently. Aim for at least 8 cups of water daily, even more, if you spend lots of time outdoors.

    Tip 2: Wear Appropriate Clothing

    Light-colored clothing is highly recommended during hot weather because light colors are more reflective than dark colors, which means they reflect more of the sun’s rays rather than absorbing them. In contrast, dark-colored clothing absorbs more sunlight, trapping more heat close to your body, increasing your discomfort and body temperature.

    Wear loose-fitting clothes and pair them with a hat and sunglasses to protect your head and eyes from the sun’s rays. If you plan to spend time in the water, wear appropriate swimwear to keep you cool and comfortable. Also, apply sunscreen 30 minutes before heading out to protect your skin from sunburn.

    Tip 3: Avoid Strenuous Activity during Peak Heat Hours

    The hottest part of the day is typically between 10 AM and 4 PM, so it’s best to schedule your activities accordingly. If you must be outdoors, try to schedule your activities for early morning or evening when temperatures are cooler. Also, take frequent breaks in shaded areas and listen to your body’s signals. Feeling lightheaded, dizzy, or nauseous are all signs that you may be experiencing heat exhaustion and need to cool down and rest.

    Additionally, pay attention to any heat advisories or warnings in your area and plan accordingly. It’s always a good idea to err on the side of caution and avoid overexerting yourself in extreme heat.

    Tip 4: Use Cooling Techniques

    You can use several simple tricks to help cool down your body in hot weather. Placing an ice pack or cold cloth on your neck, wrists, and ankles can quickly lower your core temperature. Taking a cool shower or bath, placing a damp towel on your forehead, and drinking chilled water can relieve the heat.

    You can also use a portable fan or misting bottle to create a breeze and cool down your skin. And if you have access to a swimming pool, lake, or ocean, taking a dip in the water is an excellent way to cool off and avoid heat-related illnesses.

    Tip 5: Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine

    While it may be tempting to enjoy a cold beer or iced coffee in the heat, these beverages can contribute to dehydration. Alcohol and caffeine are diuretics, meaning they cause your body to lose water and can make you feel even more dehydrated in hot weather.

    If you do choose to indulge in these beverages, make sure also to drink plenty of water throughout the day to counteract their effects.

    Tip 6: Avoid Large Protein Rich Meals

    Eating a large meal high in protein can also contribute to feeling sluggish and dehydrated in hot weather. This is because your body uses more water to digest protein, leaving you with less fluid available for other bodily functions such as sweating and regulating body temperature.

    So, instead of heavy protein-rich meals, opt for lighter options such as salads, fruits, and vegetables during hot weather. These foods also contain high amounts of water and can help keep you hydrated throughout the day.

    Schedule Regular Checkups to Monitor Your Health and Beat the Summer Heat

    LaSalle Medical Associates provides comprehensive medical services for all ages. From preventative care to specialized treatments, our healthcare professionals deliver personalized care to keep you healthy and feeling great. Our clinics are located in multiple locations to make it convenient for you to access quality and affordable healthcare.

    Schedule an appointment and stay healthy this summer.

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