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BEAT THE HEAT - SUMMER SAFETY

Summer Safety: How to Beat the Heat

In the summer the combination of high heat and high humidity can be very dangerous. Those especially at risk during these weather conditions include:

  • The elderly
  • People with certain chronic illnesses, such as heart conditions or people unable to move or change position by themselves
  • Infants and preschool children
  • People who exercise vigorously or are involved in strenuous work outdoors for prolonged periods
  • People taking certain medications, for example, for mental health conditions. (Please consult your doctor or pharmacist).
How to avoid heat related illness:

  • Drink lots of water and natural juices even if you donít 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.
  • Take advantage of air conditioned or cool places such as shopping malls, libraries, community centres or a friendís place.
  • If you donít have air conditioning, keep shades or drapes drawn and blinds closed on the sunny side of your home, but keep windows slightly open.
  • Keep electric lights off or turned down low.
  • Take a cool bath or shower periodically or cool down with cool, wet towels.
  • Wear loose fitting, light clothing.
  • Avoid heavy meals and using your oven.
  • Avoid intense or moderately intense physical activity.
  • Never leave a child in a parked car or sleeping outside in direct sunlight.
  • Fans alone may not provide enough cooling when the temperature is high.
  • Consult your doctor or pharmacist regarding side effects of your medications.
Get help from a friend, relative, or a doctor if you have the following symptoms of heat illness:

  • Rapid breathing
  • Weakness or fainting
  • More tiredness than usual
  • Headache
  • Confusion
Friends and relatives can help someone with heat illness by doing the following:

  • Call for help.
  • Remove excess clothing from the person.
  • Cool the person with lukewarm water, by sponging or bathing.
  • Move the person to a cooler location.
  • Give the person sips of cool water, not ice cold water.
If you become ill, faint, have difficulty breathing or feel confused and disoriented, call your doctor.

In an emergency, call 911

For more information on heat related illness call:
Toronto Health Connection at 416-338-7600.

This valuable information is provided by the City of Toronto website, for complete and upto-date info, please visit: www.toronto.ca

 
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