Survive a heat wave

Edited by Ephraim, Charmed, Eng, Ermin and 10 others

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A heat wave can be a dangerous weather event. There are steps you can take to minimize the effects of a heat wave, by being properly prepared. In this article, we will talk about days when the temperature is over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, as they can be hazardous if precautions are not taken, especially when this takes place over an extended period of time. A heat wave is more dangerous for people who have pre-existing conditions such as asthma, people who do not have adequate shelter and the very young and the very old. These steps will help you survive, as well as teaching you the dangers of a heat wave. A heat wave is determined by high degrees of heat and humidity, as well as with the length of these high temperatures.

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  1. 1
    Cool Surroundings.
    Having access to water and air conditioning during a heat wave is crucial to getting through the heat wave without negative effects. Water and a cool place will get you through just fine. Make sure your air conditioner is maintained and working properly at the beginning of your hot season. You do not want to be waiting for a service technician with everyone else who was not prepared. Have refillable water bottles so if you need to leave your home, you can maintain hydration on the go. You can become dehydrated very quickly on an extremely hot day, and the regular intake of water will prevent this from happening.
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    Avoid Heat Stroke.
    When a person is exposed high levels of heat, the body becomes overworked, trying to regulate the body's temperature. People may exert themselves trying to accomplish things they need to do, trying to overcome the lack of energy brought about by the heat. Heat is more of an issue for people of an age, to children, and to anyone already having health issues. Over-exposure to heat for long periods of time can cause serious health problems. Heat exhaustion, the loss of bodily fluids due to over-sweating, and it's effects, can be very dangerous. Heat cramps can also be a medical issue. Spasms wrack the entire body, due to over-exertion during the heat. The most common health issue from heat, is heatstroke. Heatstroke occurs when a person's body temperature rises too high, too fast, and the body is unable to cool down fast enough. This is serious enough to destroy brain cells, for the brain will not get enough oxygen due to overheating of the body, thereby affecting most of the functions of the body.
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Now that we know the dangers of a heat stroke we can discuss things you can avoid it:

  • Try to avoid strenuous activities during the hottest part of the day.
  • Wear sunscreen outside.
  • Stay off dark pavement as much as possible, as the dark color attracts the heat.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Wear loose-fitting clothing
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    Public pools are popular on a hot day for a reason. If you do not have access to a pool or body of water such as a lake in your area, you can use your shower or bathtub to cool down. 10 minutes in a cool bath can regulate your body temperature for quite a while. You can also apply a cold cloth to your neck or wrist. Cooling your pressure points is a quick way to cool your entire body. Simply take a few rags or facecloths and soak them in water, fold them to size, and put them in the freezer. Half an hour later, remove them from the freezer and apply. When they are no longer cool, repeat above steps.
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    Make your home safe.
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    Make sure all your air conditioning units fit snugly into the Windows. If it's available, use insulation around the unit to make it work more efficiently. Apply a Sun Reflector Kit to the Windows of the house, as its function is to reflect the heat back outside. Light-blocking curtains are also a great way to keep heat out and cool air in. Make sure all the doors are sealed at the bottom, or covered, to ensure that the cool air stays in the room, and prevents the heat from coming in beneath the door. Storm doors need to be closed securely, for the same reason.
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    Materials like polyester and silk are not recommended for hot weather
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    It is important to wear clothes that fit loosely and are made of natural fabrics like cotton. Avoid clothing that is darker in color, as darker colors absorb more heat than light-colored clothing. To protect your head from the heat, it is recommended you wear a hat to help protect yourself from the heat. A hat with a brim, like a baseball cap, is best.
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    People tend to want to go outside and enjoy themselves in the heat, but during a heat wave, it can be unsafe to do so. It would be best to stay indoors as much as possible during the heat wave. Stay away from the sun's rays, which can cause many health problems. If you do not have the use of AC in your home, consider spending the hottest hours of the day in a public place that does have AC. If you live in a house with more than one story, it is recommended that you stay in the lower parts of the house as heat rises, and the upper floors are always hotter than the lower floors.
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    The more fluids you put into your body, the better, for heat makes you sweat, causing you to loose precious liquids. Do not consume alcohol during a heat wave, as it causes dehydration. This is exactly what you want to avoid during a heatwave. Instead, drink plenty of water and sports drinks such as gatorade, powerade and vitamin water, for these will keep you hydrated. The more you sweat, the more liquids you are losing, therefore, the more you should drink.
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    Make cold food choices as often as possible.
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    Foods like fruit, salads, or sandwiches are good for the body, as they will fill you up and also help keep your body cooler during the heat wave. Mints and tropical fruits like mango, are refrigerants, and keep your body cool. Just like you would eat a hot bowl of soup on a cold day to warm you up, consume cold foods during a heat wave to cool you down. Do not use the oven in your kitchen, if at all possible, as this will add extra heat to your home. Utilize your outdoor grill for hot meals.
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    It is not recommended during a heat wave but there are a lot of people who exercise no matter what. If you must exercise, then do so during the coolest part of the day. This will mostly be at night time. When exercising, ensure that you are hydrating yourself properly, for you will be sweating more during a heatwave, than if you were exercising during cooler temperatures. Bottom line - if you don't have to exercise, don't do it, as you put yourself in more danger by exercising. If you have to - take extra precautions.
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These steps will help you to get through a heat wave. The best way to survive a heat wave is to prepare for it before it gets to you. Pay attention to the weather. If you know there is a heat wave coming, you have time to prepare by utilising the suggestions above. If the heat wave is already upon you, then you can follow the above steps according to your own situation, as everyone is presented with different situations."

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How to survive a day at work during a heat wave

If you are working, whether you are inside or outside a building, you can't avoid a heat wave. So, it is very important to know how to deal with it in order to avoid getting heat stroke, which can affect people of all ages. What you should do is:

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  1. 1
    Drink plenty of water.
    This will probably increase your trips to the bathroom, so don't worry if it does. The most important thing is to avoid dehydration and heat stroke. If possible, drink 8 - 10 glasses of cold water a day. Do not drink ice-cold water, as not only is it a shock to your system, it slows down digestion, and leaves you feeling bloated.
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  2. 2
    Apply high SPF lotions and creams.
    Too much sun exposure to the sun can result in sun burns, freckles or sun spots. If you leave the building, even for a few minutes, especially during the hottest hours, reapply SPF lotions and creams.
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  3. 3
    About window treatments.
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    if you are indoors, whether at work or at home, and there is no air-conditioning, open all the Windows, but shut the blinds and/or curtains. The sun's rays may harm your skin, and increase the temperature in your house. Anything to cover the Windows will do, as long as it shields you from direct sunlight.
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  4. 4
    Avoid sugary and caffeinated drinks, again, especially during the peak hours when the heat is more intense.
    The drinks might make you feel good temporarily, but actually, these drinks are diarrhetics and will dehydrate you.
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  5. 5
    When there is a dress code at work.
    Wear light and breathable fabrics to the office during a heat wave. Try to stick to the dress code, but it's more important you stay healthy. Having a summer suit in your closet for just such an occasion, would be a really good idea. If you are working outdoors, be sure to wear long-sleeved, loose shirts to protect yourself from the harsh sunlight.
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  6. 6
    Surround yourself with pedestal and desk fans.
    If the office you're working in doesn't have an air-conditioner, request that your employer supply pedestal and/or desk fans in the workplace. The breeze will keep the air circulating as well as help reduce over-sweating.
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Questions and answers

What do you need to survive a heatwave?

cool fresh water

You need to know how to survive a heat wave, and the negative affects it can have on your health. Knowledge is power. If you know what to expect from a heat wave, the serious health issues it can cause and what you should to to do to avoid these issues, not only should you be okay, but you might help other people in the same situation. Some of the points in this article can save lives.

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These are the things that you must prepare to keep you cool:

  • Cool, fresh water.
  • Air conditioner or fan.
  • Appropriate food.
  • Light, loose, breathable, comfortable clothing.
  • Towels or handkerchiefs, hats and sunglasses.
  • Sunscreen.

- Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Drinking water helps our body to regulate temperature by distributing the heat from active parts of our tissues to the skin and cooling our body through perspiration. Bathing in cool water also cools down your body. You can soak a towel in cool water, and wrap it around your head, or simply fill up a spray bottle with water, and spritz yourself frequently.

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- During a heat wave, it's best to stay in well-ventilated rooms with air conditioning or fans. You should try to spend the hottest part of the day (around 11 a.M. To 4 p.M.) in places that do have air conditioning. If you don't have it in your home, you may try going to a shopping mall or public building. Always remember to stay out of the sun if possible.

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- Be aware of the foods you eat. Make sure to eat lots of watery fruits like watermelon, pineapple, etc. Avoid foods that are rich in proteins and foods that increase your metabolic rate, because they will cause water-loss in your body.

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. These are things recommended to wear during a heat wave. Loose-fitting garments made from non-synthetic fibers. Cotton, gauze, linen are best. This is why people in the Middle-East dress in the manner.

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Avoid drinking alcohol. Drink cool, rather than hot drinks. Do not eat sweet foods. Alcohol, hot drinks and sweet foods will work against you during a heat wave. Avoid strenuous activity and take things slowly. Be calm, and avoid situations that make you anxious, angry or stressed. Anything that raises your blood pressure is not good.

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Drink more than 8 glasses of water a day. Shower, bath, spritz with cool water.

There are some exercises you can do to reduce the heat in your body. It may seem counter-productive, but sweating will actually help repel excess heat in your body.

How do you plan for an extended heat wave?

Be up to date on your local weather forecast. This will help you prepare if an extended heat wave is in the forecast. Know the possible effects or risks of a prolonged heat wave and know how to prevent them. Prepare the things you will need, and follow the tips in the article above. Do your best to enjoy the heat wave by going to a beach, pool or any other place you can cool off, but of course, later in the day, when the sun is not so hot. You might want to consider that place you are planning to go to for your family vacation, might be too hot, and prone to heat waves. Especially if you do not live in a particularly warm climate.

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Abnormally high temperatures are a threat to every one of us. There is a reason, the weather channels and news agencies warn of high temperatures and the risk of a heat wave.

The longer the heat wave lasts, the more dangerous the situation becomes, especially for those who already have health problems. Sadly, many people who have died due to a heat wave, were in a position where they could not afford to take the necessary precautions. The most common causes of death due to a heat wave are; dehydration, heart attack, stroke, and various respiratory conditions such as asthma.

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A heat wave impacts our economy. It affects our food supply, water and electricity. An extended heat wave can cause death of livestock, a decrease in crop yields, depleted water in our reservoirs, all because water is in short supply. The increased demand for electricity during a heat wave, can put stress on a grid, which can result in blackouts.

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So be ready. Always have extra food and water in case of such an emergency. Know what you are up against, and you'll know exactly how to deal with it.

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