Summer heat advice

Heatwave alertExtreme heat can have a significant effect on health, even causing death.

Even if temperatures do not hit ‘extreme’ levels, advice from our Public Health Team is to:

  • keep safe in the sun
  • seek shade to cool down
  • keep hydrated with plenty of cool fluids

This hot weather can be especially dangerous for particular groups such as:

  • children
  • older people
  • people with an illness

because their bodies are not able to cope as well with the heat.

If you think that you, or someone you know is suffering from heatstroke or heat exhaustion, it is very important you react quickly.

The St John Ambulance service has some very helpful first aid advice for both hot and cold conditions.

But prevention is always better than a cure, and so it’s important for everyone to be aware of general safety advice.

Older people

Older people are at particular risk of de-hydration, so it’s very important to drink lots of fluids and stay cool.

If staying indoors try to keep bedroom and living spaces cool.

Do this by:

  • closing curtains on windows in direct sunlight
  • opening windows at cooler times of the day
  • turning off non-essential electrical items as these generate heat

A jug of water or perhaps a fruit cordial could also be kept in the fridge so it stays cold and refreshing and is available at all times.

Wearing loose cotton clothing can also help.

Children and young people

We urge all parents and carers to make sure children are protected as much as possible, this should include:

  • wearing sunscreen
  • wearing a sun hat and sunglasses
  • drinking plenty of cold drinks

It’s also advisable to keep children in the shade as much as possible, especially during the hottest part of the day (typically 11 am to 3 pm) and again wearing loose clothing can help keep cool.

Commuters

Commuters are also at risk, so however you are travelling; whether by train, bus, car or even walking, make sure you carry a bottle of water with you at all times.

If you are on public transport and you start to feel exceptionally hot, then perhaps get off at the next stop and wait for your body to cool down before starting your journey back up again.

General advice

Whilst there are some specific groups which are more vulnerable to the pitfalls of hot weather, our Public Health  Team is keen to ensure that all residents are aware of basic sun safety advice.

We urge everyone to be aware, and be careful while enjoying this hotter than usual summer, and to:

  • Take sensible precautions to avoid sunburn (try to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm and wear sunscreen).
  • Wear loose cotton clothing.
  • Drink lots of cool drinks.
  • Seek shade (but remember sunburn can even occur when in partial shade or when cloudy).
  • Wear sunglasses and a hat.
  • Keep bedroom and living spaces cool. Do this by:
    • closing curtains on windows in direct sunlight
    • opening windows at cooler times of the day
    • turning off non-essential electrical items as these generate heat
  • Look out for your friends, family and neighbours, especially:
    • vulnerable adults
    • young children and babies
    • those with serious illnesses
Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle, especially infants and young children - the same applies to animals who are also vulnerable in hot weather.