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Beat the Heat

May 30, 2018

Beat the Heat this Summer

With 100° days already here, it’s important to keep an eye on the weather and how it affects your health.

Understanding High Temps:

Given the extreme heat experienced in Texas, heat stress and illness an happen quickly. It’s important to remember that heat-related deaths are not limited to days of extreme heat, but can in-fact happen year round.

Hanging out in the heat for too long can lead to a number of issues, like heat exhaustion.Heat exhaustion happens when your body overheats. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include cool, moist skin with goose bumps when in the heat, heavy sweating, faintness, dizziness, fatigue, a weak, rapid pulse, nausea and headache.
Heatstroke also happens when your body overheats. It’s the most serious of the heat illnesses and can even result in death. Symptoms of heatstroke include a high body temperature.

Hot Vehicles

In just 80° weather, the inside of a car can easily reach 100°F in just 10 minutes, with seats, dashboards and other interior surfaces easily reaching 180° to 200°+.

Children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances. Temperatures inside a parked vehicle can reach lethal temperatures in a matter of minutes. Last year (2014) alone, in the U.S., more than 30 child heatstroke related deaths in vehicles were reported, with an untold number of pet deaths in parked vehicles.

Heat Safety Tips:

– Slow down: reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities for cooler times of the day (like morning).
– Children, seniors and anyone with health problems should stay in the coolest available place.
– Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, loose lifting, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight.
– Drink plenty of water (avoid extremely cold beverages), non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids, even if you don’t feel thirsty.
– Minimize direct exposure to the sun. Sunburn reduces your body’s ability to cool.
– Eat light, cool, easy-to-digest foods such as fruit or salads.
– Watch of for signs of heatstroke: Headache, Dizziness/Light-Headedness, Lack of Sweating, Red/Hot/Dry Skin, Muscle Weakness or Cramps, Nausea, Rapid Heartbeat

Child Safety Tips:

– Never leave a child unattended in a vehicle, even with the windows down — even for “just a minute”!
– Before placing your child in their car seat, do a quick Touch Check of their seat. Surfaces (including their seat) in your vehicle can easily reach 180° to 200°, hot enough to severely burn and injure a child.
– Teach children not to play in, on, or around cars. Child deaths have been reported from children accidentally locking themselves in unattended vehicles.
– Always lock car doors and trunks–even at home–and keep keys out of children’s reach.
– Make sure children have left the car when you reach your destination. Do a quick inspection of your backseat before you lock your car, and never leave sleeping infants in the car — ever!
– Parked vehicles are not the only danger; everyone is susceptible to hyperthermia (“Heat Stroke”). Be sure to take extra precautions if you plan to be outside.

Pet Safety Tips:

– Provide ample shade and water anytime your pet is outside.
– Limit their excise on hot days and avoid the heat of the day. Adjust the intensity and duration of exercise in accordance to the temperature.
– Never let a pet unattended in a vehicle, even with the windows down. Temperatures inside a vehicle can quickly climb to unsafe levels.

 

NOAA's Heat Index Chart

The Heat Index is a measure of how hot it really feels when relative humidity is factored in with the actual air temperature. For example, if the air temperature is 96°F and the relative humidity is 65%, the heat index – how hot it feels – is 121°F.

Advisory

As an insurance provider, we know the impact adverse conditions and weather events can have. Being prepared and informed helps you protect what matters most.

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