As we are currently enjoying the summer weather we just wanted to give everyone a few tips on how to keep out the heat:
• keep curtains on windows exposed to the sun closed while the temperature outside is higher than it is inside;
• once the temperature outside has dropped lower than it is inside, open the windows providing there are no security concerns;
• water external and internal plants, and spray the ground outside windows with water (avoid creating slip hazards) to help cool the air (however, check local drought water restrictions before using hosepipes;)
• stay out of the sun wherever possible, especially between the hours of 11am and 3pm;
• stay in the shade and wear hats, sunscreen, thin scarves and light clothing if going outside.
How to keep body temperatures down:
• ensure that you reduce your levels of physical exertion;
• take regular cool showers or baths, or at least an overall body wash;
• wear light, loose cotton clothes to absorb sweat and prevent skin irritation;
• sprinkle your clothes with water regularly, and splash cool water on your face and the back of their neck. A damp cloth on the back of the neck helps temperature regulation;
• eat cold food, particularly salads and fruit with a high water content;
• drink regularly, preferably water or fruit juice, but avoid alcohol and caffeine (tea, coffee, colas);
• monitor your daily fluid intake, particularly if you have several carers or are not always able to drink unaided.
As well as the specific symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke, watch out for signs that
could be attributed to other causes, such as:
• difficulty sleeping, drowsiness, faintness and changes in behaviour;
• increased body temperature;
• difficulty breathing and increased heart rate;
• dehydration, nausea or vomiting;
• worsening health problems, especially of heart or respiratory system.
If you suspect someone has heatstroke, call 999. While waiting for the ambulance:
• take the person’s temperature;
• if possible, move them somewhere cooler;
• cool them down as quickly as possible by giving them a cool shower, sprinkling them with water or wrapping them in a damp sheet, and using a fan to create an air current;
• encourage them to drink fluids, if they are conscious;
• do not give aspirin or paracetamol.
Residents can phone NHS 111 or their GP if they are concerned about their health or others.
For further information on the Public Health’s Heatwave Plan please visit their website. It outlines the responsibilities of health and social care organisations at different stages during a heatwave.