Here are some tips on surviving the heatwave

It has been extremely hot lately leading to a lot of discomfort and the need to adjust a few things in one’s daily schedule.

Hot weather can affect anyone, be it the young, healthy or the old. However, there are some people who are more at risk than others.

  • Those that are 65 years and above, especially those living alone.
  • Those that have a medical condition such as heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease or mental illness.
  • Those taking certain medications to treat allergies, for blood pressure, heart conditions, seizure disorders and mental health conditions as these may affect the way the body reacts to heat as a side effect.
  • Those taking alcohol or drugs.
  • Those with limited mobility.
  • Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers.
  • Babies and young children.
  • People who are overweight or obese.

Coping with the heat

Despite the harshness of the weather, there are ways to go about it. Dr Franklin Wasswa, a general practitioner, says:

  • Drink water to ensure you stay adequately hydrated. It helps to carry a water bottle with you always so you can sip as often as possible.

One way of checking if you are well hydrated is by paying attention to the colour of your urine. If it is clear or slightly yellow, you are taking in enough fluids hence safe. However, if it is a deeper yellow shade, you are not taking enough fluids and need to increase the frequency. It is also important to watch that your children take enough water as these can easily get dehydrated.

  • Never leave children, older people or pets in cars because the temperature inside a parked car can double within minutes.
  • Try to keep cool as much as possible. For instance, wear light clothing or a hat.
  • Plan ahead to allow you schedule outdoor activities in the coolest part of the day. For instance, workout in the morning rather than in the afternoon, walk the dog after the sun has set rather than in the early evening hours, take the walk in the late evening hours. All these are to avoid the brunt of the hot sunshine.
  • It is better to eat smaller meals more often. Additionally, if you can have cold meals such as salads, it will help to cool off.
  • While the focus is usually on humans, for those with pets, it is important to take care of them as well. For instance, while dogs cool off by panting, in extreme weather, ensure they are hydrated and have a shade to rest.

We cannot overemphasize the need to stay hydrated. One should also always carry a good sunscreen lotion to protect your skin from the harmful effects of the sun.


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