The hot days of summer are here. Throughout the country, thousands of employees who work indoors and outdoors face the potential dangers associated with overexposure to heat. Factors such as working in direct sunlight, high temperatures and humidity, physical exertion and lack of sufficient water intake can lead to heat stress.
The following tips will help you stay cool and healthy this summer, both at work and at home!
Wear Light, Breathable Clothing
Dark, bulky clothing attracts heat, which warms your body temperature and can put you at risk for heat exhaustion. Fortunately, light clothing has the opposite effect, so wear light-colored clothing when possi-ble. Lighter material allows your skin to breathe and naturally regulate your body temperature.
Increase Your Water / Fluid Intake
Develop the habit of drinking water or other replenishing drinks frequently throughout the day. DO NOT depend on your thirst; thirst is a poor indicator of adequate fluid intake.
Cover your head When working outdoors in the summer, consider wearing a hat. Not only do hats help with avoiding sun exposure, they can also cool you down.
Heat acclimatization is necessary to prevent or reduce the severity of heat illness. Acclimatization is a process where your body adapts and becomes more efficient at cooling itself over time during the summer months. Be sure to drink small amounts of cool liquids frequently, e.g., one cup every 20 minutes. Although some commercial replacement drinks like Gatorade contain salt, this is not necessary for acclimatized individuals because most people add enough salt to their summer diets.