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Hydration and the Heat Wave

Hydration and the Heat Wave
Or as Martha sang, ‘Heat wave …. uh … Heat waaaaaaave …’

Or as a fellow FB’er posted … ‘Don’t we just call this summer?’

Anyhow, tamayto, tomado, whatever the weather *cue all-knowing sniggering* the fact remains, when the temperatures soar, do you know how to keep hydrated?

Here’s a refresher (thanks for this, AquAid compadré) about keeping yourself refreshed and hydrated through this blistering (and no, do not mean this in a sexy way) heat. To make it super easy, I’ve repeated keeping cool ideas for home, work and all around.

In the workplace:

  • Stay hydrated!  Set an alarm clock if necessary to make sure that you visit the water cooler as often as needs be to replenish your drinking water.
  • Chill your wrists: Run cold water over your wrists for a minute every hour.  Try not to do this using the cool water from the water cooler – it’s messy and I doubt the water cooler station is meant to be used as a private bathing area. Rather use the taps in the bathroom.
  • Drink cool (but not icy cold) liquids to help lower your body temperature. Yep, the water cooler station is perfect for this.
  • Turn off electronics: If they’re not being used, unplug electronic devices to keep them from generating unnecessary heat.

At home:

  • Chill your wrists: Run cold water over your wrists for a minute every hour:
  • Stay hydrated!  Kids may not feel thirsty, but it’s essential to stay hydrated, so make sure young ones are getting lots of water. If you’re planning to leave the house, freeze some water bottles and take them with you.
  • Drink cool (but not icy cold) liquids to help lower your body temperature.
  • Try to keep water refrigerated prior to drinking, if possible.
  • A little help from some fans: They may be little, but those battery-operated personal fans can make a big difference.
  • Frozen flannel: Freeze a flannel and then plop it on the back of your and your family’s necks – instant refresher.
  • Turn off electronics: If they’re not being used, unplug electronic devices to keep them from generating unnecessary heat.
  • Stay downstairs: Downstairs areas tend to be cooler.  Herd kids into an air-conditioned basement, if available. If not, stay on the ground floor.
  • Don’t cook: Feed your family fresh foods such as salads and fruit. Not only will this cool the body’s core, it’ll also keep cooking-related heat from filling up the house.
  • Postpone laundry: Plan to do heat-generating activities after the sun goes down. Do laundry at night, for example.

All around:

  • Shut windows and pull down the shades when it is hotter outside. If it’s safe, open them for ventilation when it’s cooler.
  • Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don’t go out between 11am and 3pm (the hottest part of the day) if you’re vulnerable to the effects of heat.
  • Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn’t possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed (metallic blinds and dark curtains can make the room hotter).
  • Have cool baths or showers, and splash yourself with cool water.
  • Drink cold drinks regularly, such as water and fruit juice.  Avoid tea, coffee and alcohol.
  • Stay tuned to the weather forecast on the radio or TV, or at the Met Office website.
  • Plan ahead to make sure you have enough supplies, such as food, water and any medications you need.
  • Identify the coolest room in the house so you know where to go to keep cool.
  • Wear loose, cool clothing and a hat if you go outdoors.
  • Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves.
  • People who have epilepsy or heart, kidney, or liver disease; are on fluid-restricted diets; or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing liquid intake.
  • If you’re sweating a lot, be quick to replace lost salts and minerals as well as water. Fruit juice or sports drinks with electrolytes are good choices, but do not take salt tablets unless directed to by your doctor. Taking calcium supplements, however, is a good idea.
  • Drink cool (but not icy cold) liquids to help lower your body temperature. Try to keep water refrigerated prior to drinking, if possible.


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