Tips to Beat the Heat

In the summer the combination of high heat and high humidity can be very dangerous.

People at risk during these weather conditions include:

  • The elderly.
  • People with chronic illnesses (such as diabetes, heart and respiratory conditions) or people unable to move or change position by themselves.
  • Infants and preschool children.
  • People who exercise vigorously or are involved in strenuous outdoor work for prolonged periods.
  • People taking certain medications, for example, for mental health conditions.
  • Homeless or marginally housed persons.

How to avoid heat-related illness:

  • Drink lots of water and natural fruit juices even if you don’t feel very thirsty. Avoid alcoholic beverages, coffee and cola.
  • Avoid going out in the blazing sun or heat when possible. If you must go outside, stay in the shade as much as possible and plan to go out early in the morning or evening when it is cooler and smog levels may not be as high as in the afternoon. Wear a hat.
  • Go to air conditioned or cool places such as shopping malls, libraries, community centres, movie theatres, restaurants or a friend’s place.
  • If you don’t have air conditioning, keep shades or drapes drawn and blinds closed on the sunny side of your home, but keep windows slightly open.
  • Wear loose fitting, light clothing.
  • Keep lights off or turned down low.
  • Take a cool bath or shower periodically or cool down with cool, wet towels.
  • Avoid heavy meals and using your oven.
  • Avoid intense or moderately intense physical activity.
  • Never leave a child in a parked car or asleep in direct sunlight.
  • Fans alone may not provide enough cooling when the temperature is high.
  • Consult your doctor or pharmacist regarding the side effects of your medications.