Health Dept: Protect yourself from heat-related illness

HUDSON—With predictions of temperatures in the high 90s and humidity, heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps and heat rash may result from over-exposure to hot temperatures, according to a press release from the Columbia County Department of Health.

Tips for staying safe in the heat:

•Use air conditioning or go to an air-conditioned building.

•People without air conditioning in their homes, should open windows and shades on the shady side and close them on the sunny side.

•Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks.

•Take cool showers and baths.

•Take regular breaks from physical activity.

•Avoid strenuous activity during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.).

•Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.

•Stay out of the sun as much as possible.

•Wear sunscreen and a ventilated hat (e.g., straw or mesh) when in the sun, even if it is cloudy.

•Never leave children, pets or those with special needs in a parked car, even briefly. Temperatures in the car can become dangerous within a few minutes.

•Check on neighbors, family and friends, especially those who are elderly or have special needs.

•People should talk to their doctor or pharmacist about what medications might make them more sensitive to the heat.

Those at high risk of heat-related illness include: older adults, young children, people who are overweight, people who do not perspire normally, people with some chronic medical conditions, such as a history of dehydration, heart problems, respiratory or lung problems; people who work outdoors or in hot settings, and people who take certain medications that cause sensitivity to the sun or interfere with the body’s ability to sweat and stay cool.

For more information visit http://www.nyhealth.gov/publications/1243/ or call the state Department of Health, Center for Environmental Health at 800-458-1158 or the Columbia County Department of Health at 518-828-3358.

 

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