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Survival Guide for the Dog Days of Summer

8/10/2012


With the hottest days of summer in full swing, the North Oaks Walk-In Clinics team urges you to keep your family safe and healthy with the following tips:

Look before you lock.

  • High temperatures inside a closed vehicle have claimed the lives of more than 500 children 
  • nationwide since 1998. Never leave your child alone in the car! Make it a habit to always look 
  • in the front and back of your vehicle before you lock it and walk away. 

Avoid excessive sun exposure. 

  • Use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher, even late in the day and on cloudy days to prevent 
  • sunburn and skin cancer. Also try to limit sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Spoiler alert. 

  • Keeping food at proper temperatures is key in preventing the growth of food borne bacteria. 
  • Never leave picnic food out for more than 2 hours, or 1 hour if outdoor temperatures are above 90° F.

Hydrate.

  • Drink a lot of water (six or more 8 oz. glasses daily). Prolonged outdoor activity may increase 
  • sweating and make you lose fluids more rapidly than normal. Use sports drinks, which contain 
  • electrolytes like sodium and potassium, to replace what the body loses through sweat. Don’t 
  • wait until you are thirsty to drink. Avoid alcoholic or sugar-filled beverages to conserve body 
  • fluid and very cold drinks to avoid stomach cramps.

Swim safely.

  • Swim with a buddy, and never leave a child unsupervised by or in a pool or waterway. 
  • Also take note of weather conditions; strong winds and thunderstorms with lightening strikes 
  • can have deadly consequences.

Wear shades.

  • Wear sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays and introduce this habit to your 
  • children as early as possible. Regular use of sunglasses may reduce your risk of developing 
  • cataracts, age-related macular degeneration and cancerous growths.

Keep your cool.

  • Heat exhaustion and heat stroke happen when the body’s internal temperature rises due to prolonged outdoor activity. 
  • Besides hydration, be sure to wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing and a wide-brimmed hat to keep your cool. 
  • Try to limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours.

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