Top tips for coping with the early summer heat
DID you prepare yourself for this heat? Most of us won't have our minds and bodies ready for the summer heat; it's pleasure and its pain.
Check out these top tips from Betterhealth Victoria. You can use them now and keep using right through the next three months or so of glorious sunshine.
- Check the daily forecast - watch the news daily or check the Bureau of Meteorology website.
- Be active in the coolest part of the day including going shopping.
- Ask your GP to check if you need changes to your medicines during summer.
- Store your medicines safely at the recommended temperature.
- Ensure your fan or air-conditioner is working.
- Get ready for power failures - check you have a torch and fresh batteries, a battery-operated radio, fully charged mobile phone, food items that don't require refrigeration, medications, plenty of drinking water and other essential items.
- Make your home cooler - install window coverings, shade cloths or external blinds on the sides of the house facing the sun.
- Drink plenty of water, even if you don't feel thirsty.
- Keep a full drink bottle with you wherever you are.
- If your fluid intake is supposed to be limited, ask how much you can have during hot weather.
- Stay out of the sun during the hottest part of the day.
- When outside, wear a hat and sunscreen, light-coloured and loose natural fibre fitting clothing, and take a bottle of water with you.
- Make use cool or air-conditioned buildings such as shopping centres, libraries, cinemas or community centres.
- Use a wet towel, put your feet in cool water and have cool (not cold) showers.
- Close curtains and blinds during the hot part of the day.
- Open the windows when there is a breeze.
- Eat smaller meals more often and cold meals such as salads.
- Ensure food that needs refrigeration is properly stored.
- Avoid intense activity like exercise, renovating and gardening.
- Never leave pets in cars - the temperature can double in minutes.
- Give them a cool bath, a wet towel to lie on, a place next to a fan and plenty of fresh water.
Check in on others
- Look after others at risk in the heat - your neighbour living alone, other older people, young children, people with a medical condition and their pets.
- Keep in touch with friends and family who may need help.
- Encourage them to drink plenty of water.
If you observe or experience symptoms of heat-related illness, seek medical help.