Summer Safety Tips: How to Stay Safe Outdoors in the Summer Heat

Summer is finally here! Today, June 20th, marks the first day of summer and it is going to be a hot one. When spending time outside with friends and family, stay up to date on the weather conditions and plan accordingly.

The number 1 concern for summer safety to Lee Memorial Health System Injury Prevention Analyst/Educator Mark Tesoro is the heat issue. “Heat affects old and young. It does not discriminate. If you don’t catch dehydration early, it becomes heat stroke,” Tesoro said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Dermatology, here are some tips we have prepared for you to insure a safe summer outdoors in the extreme heat.

Stay Cool:

Try and keep your body temperature cool to avoid any heat-related illnesses.

  • Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible.
  • Find an air-conditioned shelter.
  • Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.
  • Try to avoid direct sunlight.
  • Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Take cool showers or baths.
  • Check on those most at-risk twice a day.

Stay Hydrated:

Because your body loses fluids through sweat, you can become dehydrated during times of extreme heat.

  • Drink more water than usual.
  • When exercising, drink water before, during, and after to stay hydrated.
  • Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink more fluids.
  • Drink from two to four cups of water every hour while working or exercising outside.
  • Avoid alcohol or liquids containing high amounts of sugar.
  • Remind others to drink enough water.

Stay Safe:

Though sunscreen helps with the harmful sun’s rays, sunscreen alone cannot fully protect you.

  • Wear Sunscreen. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends everyone use sunscreen that offers the following:
    • Broad-spectrum protection (protects against UVA and UVB rays)
    • Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30 or higher
    • Water resistance
  • Seek shade when appropriate. The sun is at its peak between the hours of 10:00am and 2:00pm.
  • Wear protective clothing.
  • Water, snow, and sand reflect sun rays, increasing your chance of sunburn. So use caution near those elements.
  • Get Vitamin D safely through eating healthy.
  • Avoid tanning beds. The ultraviolet lights from the tanning beds can cause skin cancer and wrinkling.
  • Check your skin. If you notice anything changing, itching, or bleeding on your skin, see a board-certified dermatologist.
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