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Don’t Lose Your Cool in the Heat

July 18, 2022
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Summer’s here! You know how hot and humid New York City can get in the summer. But do you know the best ways to keep cool, so you stay healthy?

While more than 700 people die from extreme heat every year in the US, temperatures don’t have to be extreme for you to get sick. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Environmental Health, there are two major factors affecting your body’s ability to cool off:

High humidity: Sweat won’t evaporate as quickly when the humidity is high. As a result, your body won’t release heat as fast as it needs to.

Personal factors: Age, obesity, fever, dehydration, heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation, sunburn, and prescription drug and alcohol use all play a role in how much you can cool off in very hot weather.

The CDC recommends this plan for the heat: Stay Cool, Stay Hydrated, Stay Informed.

Stay Cool

  • Remain in air conditioning as much as possible
  • Schedule outdoor activities in the morning and evening hours
  • Pace yourself, and cut down on exercise in the heat
  • Wear sunscreen
  • Don’t leave people or pets in parked cars
  • Avoid hot and heavy meals

Stay Hydrated

  • Drink plenty of water, even if you’re not thirsty, and stay away from sugary or alcoholic drinks. **If your doctor was you on water pills, ask how much water you should drink.
  • Replace salt and minerals you lose through sweat

Stay Informed

  • Check the news for updates about the weather so you know what to expect
  • Learn the signs of heat-related illness
  • Monitor those at high risk: anyone over age 65 or under two, people who are overweight or who overexert during exercise, and those who are physically ill

New York City opens cooling centers when there’s a heat emergency. You can find information about those HERE.

For more reading on keeping cool, check out Riding the Heatwave from the news portal on our website.