As the temperatures begin to steadily increase so does our desire to spend time outdoors in the beautiful sunshine. Family gatherings move from sit down dinners to afternoon barbeques, and movie dates turn into afternoons spent poolside. While we all love to work on our tan’s and feel the calming warmth of the summer sunshine, it can be dangerous for our health if we don’t take the necessary precautions. This is especially true for our fellow workers that must work outdoors in the extreme Tri-City summer heat.
Heat is the number one weather-related killer in the United States. On average, excessive heat claims more lives each year than floods, lightning, tornadoes and hurricanes combined. When the body heats too quickly to cool itself safely, or when you lose too much fluid or salt through dehydration or sweating, your body temperature rises and heat-related illness may develop.
So what precautions can we take to help reduce our risk of heat related illnesses?
- Slow down. Reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities until the coolest time of the day. Children, seniors and anyone with health problems should stay in the coolest available place, not necessarily indoors.
- Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight.
- Put less fuel on your inner fires. Foods, like meat and other proteins that increase metabolic heat production also increase water loss.
- Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. Your body needs water to keep cool. Drink plenty of fluids even if you don’t feel thirsty. Do not drink alcoholic beverages and limit caffeinated beverages.
- Don’t get too much sun. Sunburn reduces your body’s ability to dissipate heat.
- During excessive heat periods, spend more time in air-conditioned places. Air conditioning in homes and other buildings markedly reduces danger from the heat. If your job requires you to remain outdoors, use your vehicle’s air conditioner for a few minutes to cool down.
Allowing our bodies the opportunities to cool down is imperative to keeping us safe. Whether we are working or playing in the heat we must take the extra 5-10 minutes to hydrate and retreat to an air-conditioned space. Having a healthy working air-conditioner is imperative to make this possible.
This time of year keep a close eye on your homes system and make sure you have the necessary maintenance completed in time for the blistering summer months. Call us @ Apollo Heating and Air Conditioning to schedule a maintenance or provide a quote for a new system. 509-987-1500. We love keeping your HVAC system happy and you and your family cool and safe.