Avoid heat-related illness with rising summer heat

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MANITOULIN— In hot, humid weather, anyone can experience heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Those at greatest risk for heat-related illness include infants, the elderly, people with limited mobility or cognitive impairment, those who exercise vigorously or are involved in prolonged strenuous work outdoors, and anyone with chronic illness.

The following tips can help prevent heat-related illness: drink lots of water and natural juices; avoid drinks made with alcohol or caffeine; avoid going out in the sun or heat when possible; 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 and seek shade; avoid heavy meals and using your oven; try to take it easy and rest as much as possible; and place a dish of ice cubes in front of your electric fan. It has a cooling effect.

Signs and symptoms of heat-related illness include: breathing rapidly; feeling weak or fainting; being more tired than usual; cramps usually in legs or abdomen; or developing a headache or confusion.

If you or someone in your care has these symptoms, contact a health care professional, friend, or family member for help. In emergencies, call 911.

As part of the Hot Weather Response Plan prepared by the City of Greater Sudbury and the Sudbury and District Health Unit, the Health Unit provides information to keep the public safe from hot, humid weather. In addition to general heat-related information, the Health Unit offers information on beating the heat in apartment buildings, keeping your pets safe, doing outdoor activities in heat and smog, and keeping your children safe during hot weather.

Call the Sudbury and District Health Unit at 705-522-9200, ext. 464 or visit www.sdhu.com for more information.