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How To Keep Yourself Protected from Heatwave? Dos & Don'ts

A heat wave is not a joking matter as it could pose serious health risks to anyone who is not ready. Whether you are facing the scorching summer for the first time or are in search of insights on surviving the worst heat, this article offers you all the essential information on a heatwave health hazard. In this topic, we shall provided information on the recommended actions, actions to avoid and the tests that can be conducted to identify conditions such as heat stroke.

Understanding Heatwaves

Heat wave is a heat build up that lasts for a long time and is compounded by heats and humidity. These conditions lead to serious health problems, the problems becoming more acute for those at the high risk such as the elderly people, children and patients with other diseases. Understanding the signs and demarcations of heat related ailments can go along way in warranting a change in the situation.

Five Dos for Keeping Safe During Heatwave

Stay Hydrated

  • Drink Plenty of Fluids: Water, juices, and other fluids that replenish the electrolyte level in the body are good for you when you are dehydrated. This means that it is essential to take not less than 8-10 glasses of water a day even when you are not feeling thirsty.
  • Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine: Some of the effects of these beverages include dehydration. Instead, go for water or sports drinks, which replenish the electrolytes that are lost when you’re sweating.

Keep Cool

  • Stay Indoors During Peak Hours: It is recommended not to step out of the house during the period between 10 in the morning and 4 in the afternoon when the sun is at its peak.
  • Use Air Conditioning: Spend time in air-conditioned areas and minimize time spent in cars or other vehicles with poor or non-existent temperature control. If you do not have temperature control in your home, you could go to the shopping malls, libraries or other community facilities.
  • Take Cool Showers: Feel the chill by taking cool bathing or showering in cold water.

Dress Appropriately

  • Wear Lightweight Clothing: Men should avoid tight clothing, especially dark-colored suits and trousers made from synthetic and formal materials.
  • Use Hats and Sunglasses: Stay out of direct sunlight as much as you can; wear hats with wide brims, and sunglasses that protect against UV radiation.

Eat Light

  • Opt for Small, Light Meals: This implies that it might be unsafe to take heavy meals for those with high body temperatures. It is also important to take small proportions of salads, fruits, and vegetables with you.

Protect Others

  • Check on Vulnerable Individuals: Make sure that your elderly neighbors, relatives or friends are not struggling to deal with the heat.
  • Never Leave Children or Pets in Cars: The temperatures when a child is left in a parked car escalate to fatal temperatures within a short period.

Watch for Heat-Related Illnesses

  • Know the Symptoms: These are some of the symptoms to look out for when dealing with heat exhaustion and heat stroke - dizziness, nausea, headache, rapid pulse, confusion, and more.

Preventing Heat Related Diseases Checklist of Things to Avoid

Avoid Strenuous Activities

  • Limit Physical Exercise: Avoid playing any outdoor sports or engaging in any physical exercises during times when the sun is hottest. In case you need to exercise, it is advisable to do it during early in the morning or in the evening when the temperatures are relatively low.

Do Not Fully Depend on Fans Only

  • Fans Are Not Sufficient: Thus, a fan could be useful in providing comfort to the body but it is not effective when it comes to preventing heat related illnesses especially when it is hot. Choose to use air conditioning or go to the places that have relatively cooler temperatures.

Don’t Ignore Warning Signs

  • Take Symptoms Seriously: It is important to seek medical help if start feeling signs of heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

No Spicy or Heavy Foods

  • Skip Hot Foods: Consuming food that is hot or spicy and foods that are heavy can raise your body temperature. Essentially, switch to a low fat intake diet or in other words, take lighter meals that are easy to digest.

Distinguishing Heat Stroke Signs and Symptoms

Symptoms of Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is a very dangerous form and one needs to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Look for the following symptoms:

  • High Body Temperature: Fever: elevated to or above 103°F (39. 4°C) on the core body temperature.
  • Altered Mental State: The symptoms include confusion, agitation, slurring of speech, irritability, delirium and seizures.
  • Hot, Dry Skin: This could be skin that feels hot to the touch and dry in that the body is unable to sweat.
  • Nausea and Vomiting: This may entail having a queasy stomach, or vomiting.
  • Rapid Pulse: It’s rapid and powerful heartbeat.

Immediate Actions

If you suspect someone has heat stroke, take the following steps:

  • Call Emergency Services: Call an ambulance or rather seek the help of an emergency medical practitioner.
  • Move to a Cooler Environment: Take the person to a cooler or shaded area or even a place with air conditioning.
  • Cool the Person Down: Any methods to reduce the temperature of the individual should be applied such as putting the affected part in cold water, applying ice packs or wet towels on the skin.

Diagnostic Tests for Heat Stroke

To confirm a heat stroke diagnosis, healthcare professionals may perform the following tests:

  • Core Body Temperature Measurement: Administering a suppository for a proper temperature assessment through rectal thermometer.
  • Blood Tests: Electrolytes help maintain the body’s pH level and are essential in various organ functions.
  • Urine Tests: To estimate glomerular filtration rate and assess features of muscle catabolism.
  • Imaging Tests: On some occasions, diagnostic imaging procedures such as X-ray, CT scan or an MRI might be taken to determine the extent of organ damage.

Suggested Tests During Heatwaves

  • Hydration Status: It is crucial to monitor the level of hydration and even more in susceptible populations.
  • Electrolyte Levels: Regular blood checks to see how well the patient is balancing their electrolytes.
  • Heart Function: An ECG or other forms of cardiac monitoring in patients with heart disorders.


Heatwaves are a severe health threat; however, by taking preventive measures, the vulnerable individuals can be protected. Be well-hydrated, avoid direct sunlight and heat during the hottest hours of the day, and wear loose and light-colored clothes. Be aware of the signs and symptoms of heat related illnesses and respond promptly by seeking professional help if need be. Thus, it means that one can avoid the hazards of heatwaves and remain healthy if they follow these guidelines.

Further Information

To find out more details and other measures you can take when on a heat wave please watch this video here:

However, by doing these dos and don’ts, and knowing some of the signs and tests that can help in preventing heat related illnesses one can avoid getting these diseases during the hot seasons. It’s cool inside and out!

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