With temperatures on the rise we will try anything to help us keep cool. But besides staying hydrated and hanging out by the AC there are some surprising tips out there to make life a little more comfortable, and even some that you think are helping but are only making it worse.
Dr. Steve debunks the common mistakes people make when trying to cool down, gives helpful tips you may not have thought of and discussed the warning signs of when serious heat can become too dangerous.
The first thing you can do is adjust what you are eating a drinking: One type of food that can help you feel cooler is spicy food. Spicy foods help because they make you sweat, and sweat releases extra body heat which makes you cool down quicker—especially if there's a breeze.
On the flip side, cool liquids will also cool you down but it doesn't last. If you cool your internal temperature too quickly, your body will overcompensate and raise your body temperature.
Sports drinks can also help you beat the heat but only if you are active. If you are not active the sugar in these drinks can make you feel even more thirsty, but can still help if you dilute them with water, decreasing the sugar content, but still getting you the electrolytes you need.
High temperatures may be uncomfortable, but they can also be dangerous:
Heat stroke is one serious effect of high temperatures. Heat stroke occurs when the body is unable to regulate its temperature and it can cause death or permanent disability without emergency treatment. If someone has heat stroke you should call for immediate medical assistance, get to a shaded area, and cool down the victim.
Signs of heat stroke include:
- Extremely high body temp (above 103°f)Red, hot, dry skin Rapid, strong pulseThrobbing headacheDizzinessNauseaConfusionUnconsciousness
Heat exhaustion is milder but also dangerous effect of extreme heat exposure. Heat exhaustion can develop after prolonged exposure to high temperatures and inadequate fluids. It is the body's response to an excessive loss of the water and salt in sweat. If someone is suffering from heat exhaustion give them cool beverages, rest, and retreat to an air conditioned environment.
Signs of heat exhaustion include:
- Heavy sweatingPalenessMuscle crampsTirednessWeaknessDizzinessHeadacheNausea or vomitingFainting