After losing out on last summer, many of us want to take this year by storm; however, we should first keep in mind all the health implications that come along with exceptionally high temperatures. Make sure you can have fun this summer without harming yourself or your body.
Heat Exhaustion vs. Heat Stroke
Understanding the difference between heat exhaustion and heat stroke and the way to deal with them is very important if you spend a lot of time outside in the sun.
Heat exhaustion is not quite as serious as heat stroke and it can be treated with 30 minutes of cooling down. If you are experiencing headaches, dizziness, loss of appetite, excessive sweating, cramping, fast breathing, and a strong sense of thirst, you are going through heat exhaustion.
On the other hand, heat stroke is much more serious. You will know you are experiencing this if you are feeling unwell even after the 30-minute cool-down period, not sweating while you are hot, fast breathing, confusion, seizures, loss of consciousness, etc. A heat stroke requires immediate medical attention.
To avoid both heat exhaustion and heat stroke, you should drink plenty of cold drinks, take cool showers, wear light clothing, avoid the sun between 11 am and 3 pm, avoid extreme exercise in the heat, etc. The elderly and children are more susceptible to the heat, so keep an eye out.
Wearing sunscreen is the number one thing we know about summer safety. However, since there are so many options, we should know what to look for when choosing our sunscreen.
- First, you want to choose a sunscreen that provides broad-spectrum protection. This means that you will be protected against both UVA and UVB rays. These two rays can be responsible for skin cancer and premature aging. Having double protection is important.
- Secondly, you want a sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher. The higher the SPF number, the more protection you get. If it is SPF 15 or below, you will be protected from sunburns but not skin cancer or skin aging.
- Finally, you need to understand that no sunscreen is waterproof. Some may be labeled “water-resistant” but that will only last for a certain amount of time. You want to make sure that you are reapplying every 2 hours or more often when you are swimming.
Getting ill in the heat is most commonly caused by dehydration. Dehydration occurs when we are hot because our body begins producing a higher volume of blood to our skin which can cause us to sweat. The sweat is supposed to be cooling us off, however, if it does not do its job correctly, your heart will need to put in extra work. To avoid that, you should drink more to replenish the fluids that are being lost.
Dehydration can be both mild and severe. Mild dehydration has symptoms of dizziness, fatigue, and nausea. Fortunately, all you need is a glass of water to feel better. On the other hand, severe dehydration has symptoms such as dark urination, rapid heartbeat, dry skin, sunken eyes, fever, chills, etc. This type of dehydration required immediate medical attention. Letting yourself stay dehydrated for long periods of time can result in serious health complications. So, it is recommended to drink at least one glass of water per day. However, if you know you are going to overexerting yourself, you should drink much more.
Some More Quick Tips
- Dress Light- Wear clothes that allow you to regulate your body temperature.
- Protect Your Eyes- You can get major headaches by not guarding your eyes against the sun. So, protect your eyes with sunglasses.
- Eating Summer Friendly Food- Fruits and vegetables are a good way to replenish your energy and keep you hydrated in the heat.
Got Medicare Questions?
We hope this information on protecting yourself from the summer heat is helpful to you.
If you have questions about your Medicare coverage, call Empower Brokerage today. Let us help with your Medicare questions so you can get back to the activities you enjoy the most. (888) 446-9157 or click here to get an INSTANT QUOTE
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