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How to Have a Safe and Healthy Summer

By Katie Schultz


June 29, 2015 - 12:25 AM


Summer is the time to spend outdoors. No more cold days to be endured inside, if the sun is out, so are the people. However, it is imperative to stay aware of the danger that the sun brings. With precaution, heat related illnesses can be avoided, making your summer a safe one.

Whenever outside in the heat, keep the signs of heat exhaustion in mind. These symptoms include: confusion, dizziness, headache, fast heartbeat, nausea, and profuse sweating. If signs occur, seek a cooler area or go indoors. Take a cool shower or place a cool rag over the forehead, remove any clothing that is keeping the heat in, and drink water. Heat exhaustion might turn into heat stroke, which can be deadly. Heat stroke occurs when the body is overheating - that is, a temperature of 105 and up. Symptoms include the previous but also include seizures or loss of consciousness. If heat stroke occurs, medical attention is needed immediately.

It is always important to stay hydrated, especially on hot, humid days to "beat the heat".  However, water can be boring for the taste buds. Spruce up water by adding fruits to make it tasteful and healthier. Another way to give water a defined taste is to purchase water enhancers from the store, which is liquid flavoring that is squirted into water bottles. They come in an assortment of flavors like lemonade, green tea, and fruit punch.

Water helps with staying cool, but so does a person's choice of clothing. Wearing dark colors traps the heat, making a person hotter. Wearing light, loose clothing allows air to flow and keep cool. Avoid fabrics that are hot and heavy, like polyester.

Summer is the perfect opportunity to shed the "winter weight". Regular exercise is good for the body and mind. Taking daily walks, jogs, or runs and swimming can positively impact health by increasing heart and lung health, reduce body fat, and reduce the risk of heart disease. It can also be a family affair!

Remember, when outside put on sunscreen. A sunscreen of SPF 30+ is recommended to protect the skin from the harmful UV rays and significantly decrease the risk of skin cancer.

Summer is the time to make memories. With the proper care, those memories can be truly enjoyable ones.
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