By Clara Wicoff
Southwind Extension District
The recent miserably hot weather has had many (myself included) desperately looking forward to cooler temperatures. As I am writing this, more than half of the state of Kansas is under an excessive heat warning from the National Weather Service. According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, more than 100 Kansans are hospitalized each year as a result of heat stress. So, what can you do to beat the heat? Check out these tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Wear lightweight clothing.
- Stay in an air-conditioned space as often as possible. If you do not have air conditioning at home, remember that your local public library may serve as a cooling center!
- Protect yourself from the sun. Since sunburn can cause dehydration, be sure to wear a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen if you have to go outside.
- Never leave children or pets in a parked car. Try giving yourself visual cues to help prevent this from happening, such as always keeping a stuffed animal in your child’s car seat and then placing that stuffed animal in the front of the car with you after your child is buckled in.
- Stay hydrated. Do not wait until you are thirsty since the feeling of being thirsty lags behind your body’s need for water. To learn more about the importance of fluids to your health, visit bit.ly/ksreliquidassets to check out a recently released fact sheet from K-State Research and Extension.
- Keep your pets hydrated, too!
- Know the signs of heat-related illness. These can include (but are not limited to) confusion, dizziness, fainting, headache, losing consciousness, nausea or vomiting, and tiredness or weakness. Visit bit.ly/heatsigns to learn more about warning signs and what to do if someone shows these signs.
To learn more about hot weather tips from the CDC, visit bit.ly/cdchotweathertips. For more information, please contact me at [email protected] or 620-365-2242.
Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service
K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.