Top 10: Hot Summer Health and Safety Tips

By Scott Sarvay

Top 10: Hot Summer Health and Safety Tips

June 20, 2012 Updated Jun 20, 2012 at 10:06 AM EDT

UNDATED (Indiana’s NewsCenter) - Summer time activities can be lots of fun but overdoing your time in the sun could problems. Check out this list of Top 10 Hot Summer Health and Safety Tips.

Top 10 Hot Summer Health and Safety Tips:

1. Shield your skin and eyes. The “healthy” tan is a myth. Tanning and sunburn can cause aging skin and skin cancer. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes and sunscreen (SPF 15 or higher) with protective clothing for your skin. Aloe Vera can help ease the pain of sunburn.

2. Stay hydrated with water. Your body’s thirst mechanism is unreliable and gets more undependable as you age. On hot summer days, by the time you’re feeling thirsty, you’re already slightly dehydrated.

• Drink 10 or more cups of water a day. Don’t wait ‘til you’re thirsty.
• Don’t drink very cold liquids, since they can cause stomach cramps.
• When you exercise, drink 2-4 cups of cool (not cold) water every hour.
• Avoid drinks with alcohol, caffeine & sugar – they cause loss of fluids.

3. Eat healthy and safe food. Hot summer outings can tempt you to pig-out. Don't let junk food destroy your summer fun. Keep your energy up by focusing on fresh summer fruits, vegetables and lean protein.

4. Be sensible with exercise. When you’re hot and sweaty, you to lose precious minerals, keep your electrolytes balanced with plenty of minerals from fresh fruit and veggies and by taking mineral supplements.

5. Balance activity with rest. Hot summer days and vacation trips offer so many exciting activity opportunities that it’s often easy to overexert yourself. Just be sure to also schedule in time for rest and relaxation.

6. Don’t be a victim of crime. Since hot summer weather brings more people into close contact, summer is known to have the highest annual crime rate. Use these summer safety tips to avoid being a victim:

• Always let family and friends know where you’re going to be.
• Never flaunt expensive jewelry, cameras or other costly items.
• When traveling, keep your gas tank half full and lock your doors.
• Keep your money and other valuables safe and hidden from view.

7. Use safe insect protection. Although ticks can carry lime disease, mosquitoes West Nile virus and some people are allergic to bee stings, ticks, mosquitoes and bees are usually harmless. But toxic insect repellents can be dangerous. So read the directions carefully and never use them directly on your skin. Spray your clothing instead.

8. Identify poisonous plants. Both poison oak and ivy have leaf clusters of three. So when a plant has “leaves of three, let it be!” If you touch a poisonous plant, rinse the oil off your skin ASAP with cold water (and soap if available). White vinegar helps stop the itch from a rash.

9. Stay cool to beat the heat. On hot summer days your body works hard to stay cool. Help it out by limiting most outdoor activities to morning and evening. Wear light, loose-fitting clothes and drink lots of water.

If you do overdo it, cool off! And watch for these signs of heat stroke:

• Headache,
• Rapid pulse,
• Lack of sweat,
• Red hot dry skin,
• Dizziness, nausea,
• Feeling tired or weak,
• Over 102°F body temp,
• Or losing consciousness.

10. Learn simple safety steps. Take a class in CPR and keep a first aid kit handy, along with a guide book for basic first aid procedures.

You can keep your hot summer days and hot weather vacation trips filled with tons of fun by following these summer safety tips and health tips.

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