Saturday, August 4, 2012
How Cool Is That?
issues hot weather alert and offers tips to avoid heat sickness
Released by Coastal Health
Canada has issued a special weather statement today for hot weather for
Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, and Sea to Sky corridor. As a result,
the Lower Mainland Medical Health Officers for Fraser Health and Vancouver
Coastal Health are warning residents to take precautions.
Prepare for the heat
While warm weather is eagerly anticipated, hot temperatures can be
dangerous. There are a variety of mild to severe symptoms linked with
heat-related illness, including thirst, dizziness, confusion,
weakness/fainting/collapse and even death. Medical health officers are
reminding residents to take precautions to protect themselves from the heat,
1. Stay hydrated
Drink cool beverages
(preferably water) irrespective of your activity intake. Don't
wait until you are thirsty.
If your doctor
generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on
water pills, ask about increasing the amount of water you can
drink while the weather is hot.
2. Keep cool
Spend at least several
hours every day in an air-conditioned facility (such as a
shopping centre, library, community centre or restaurant) for at
least several hours every day.
Use public splash
pools, water parks or pools or take a cool bath or shower.
temperatures, fans alone are not effective. Applying cool water
mist or wet towels to your body prior to sitting in front of a
fan is a quick way to cool off.
Dress for the weather
by wearing loose, light-weight clothing. Protect yourself from
the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
Keep your home cool.
Open windows, close shades, use an air conditioner and prepare
meals that do not require an oven.
Avoid sunburn, stay in
the shade or use sunscreen with SPF 30 or more.
Avoid tiring physical
work or exercise in the heat. If you must exercise, drink two to
four glasses of non-alcoholic fluids each hour. Limit outdoor
activity during the day to early morning and evening.
NEVER leave children
or pets alone in a parked car. Temperatures can rise to 52°C
(125°F) within 20 minutes in an enclosed vehicle when the
outside temperature is 34°C (93°F). Leaving the car windows
slightly open or "cracked" will not keep the inside of the
vehicle at a safe temperature.
3. Check in on others
People living alone
are at high risk of severe heat related illness. Check regularly
on older people, those who are unable to leave their homes and
anyone who may not be spending at least several hours every day
in air conditioned places for signs of heat-related illness.
Ask whether people
know how to prevent heat-related illness and are doing so.
If they are unwell,
move them to a cool shady spot, help them get hydrated and call
for medical assistance if required.
4. Get informed
Listen to local news
and weather channels.
For more information
on heat-related illness, call HealthLink BC by dialing 811.
Contact your local
government to find out what services (such as air conditioned
buildings and public splash parks) are available in your area.
VCH is responsible for the
delivery of $2.9 billion in community, hospital and residential care
to more than one million people in communities including Richmond,
Vancouver, the North Shore, Sunshine Coast, Sea to Sky corridor,
Powell River, Bella Bella and Bella Coola.
Fraser Health provides a wide range of integrated health services to
the largest and fastest growing population in B.C. The health
authority is committed to improving the health of the population and
the quality of life of more than 1.6 million people living in
communities from Burnaby to White Rock to Hope.
Copyright (c) 2012 The Valley Voice