Advice to prevent heat-related illnesses and injuries during hot weather

As temperatures rise during the week, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) offers advice on how to stay safe and avoid serious health problems.

Stay Cool

  • Wear appropriate clothing: Choose lightweight, loose-fitting clothing.
  • Use air conditioning: Take breaks in an air-conditioned location to cool down. Fans can provide comfort, but won’t prevent heat-related illnesses.
  • Pace yourself: If you’re not accustomed to working in a hot environment, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually.
  • Wear sunscreen: Sunburn affects your body’s ability to cool down and can make you dehydrated. Protect yourself from the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses and apply and reapply sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher every two hours.
  • Avoid hot and heavy meals: They add heat to your body.

Stay Hydrated

  • Drink plenty of fluids: Drink more fluids than usual. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
    • Avoid surgary drinks, caffeine and alcohol. Avoid ice-cold beverages that could cause stomach cramping.
  • Replace salt and minerals: Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body that need to be replaced. A sports drink can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat.

Stay Informed

  • Know the signs: Learn the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses and how to treat them.
  • Use a buddy system: When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your co-workers and have someone do the same for you. Heat-induced illness can cause a person to become confused or lose consciousness
  • Monitor those at high risk: Although anyone at any time can suffer from heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk than others.