Carefully Celebrate the Sun on Its Longest Day!
Today the tilt of Earth’s semi-axis is most tilted toward the sun, making it the year’s day with the most sunlight here in Florida. Did you know that penguins and scientists hanging out on the poles will have a continuous day of daylight?
The summer solstice is still relatively cool, with the warmest temperatures coming in July and August, because spring has left the planet cool. We’ll get the most direct and intense sunlight of the year on the solstice but previous low temperatures mean you’ll still be able to celebrate outside.
All around the world, cultures have celebrated the summer solstice with holidays, rituals, dances, and feasts as there is more time to enjoy the outdoors together. While you’re out celebrating, make sure to keep everyone safe by carefully watching and addressing any heat-related problems that may arise.
Hot Weather Concerns
Across the United States, heat is actually the top weather-related killer and leads to more deaths than floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and lightning combined. In Florida, hurricanes seem to be a bigger threat, but heat concerns can strike any day of the summer and may catch you unaware.
Dehydration and its symptoms are the biggest concern for heat this summer. When your body gets too hot and is forced to cool itself quickly, you lose too much fluid and salts through sweating and dehydration. This causes your body temperature to rise internally and leads to heat-related concerns.
Top Heat Disorders
There are some common and dangerous things to watch out for this summer:
- Sunburns: When skin is exposed to the sun for too long it can become red and have painful swelling, blisters, and fever and cause headaches. If you get mild sunburn without blisters, you can use a topical ointment. Sunburns with blisters should be medically dressed and those with fevers should have a doctor’s care.
- Heat Cramps: These are painful spasms that happen after heavy sweating. They usually happen in the legs or abdominal area. Gently massage muscles to help stop the spasms and give the sufferer sips of water to help them rehydrate.
- Heat Exhaustion: If someone turns pale and feels cold despite heavily sweating, get them to some shade immediately. The victim may also faint or vomit. Have them lie down and loosen their clothes. If possible, move them to an air-conditioned room. If vomiting persists, seek immediate medical attention.
- Heat Stroke: Heat stroke is a medical emergency and you should seek immediate medical attention. If someone has a very high temperature, has a pounding heart and faints or falls unconscious, immediately call 9-1-1. While waiting for emergency help, carefully move the victim to the shade or an air-conditioned space. Never give them fluids unless specifically directed to by emergency personnel.
When you and your family go outside this summer, make sure you take some time to find out about the weather and take steps to keep everyone safe. Heat-related illnesses are avoidable if proper precautions are made.
- Never leave your child unattended in a car.
- Check to make sure you have all of your children when leaving the car.
- Lock car doors, trunks, and any other items near your home that children could crawl into and become trapped. Keep keys to these items out of reach.
- Speak with kids about not playing in dangerous items such as cars or refrigerators.
- When going for a ride, check the safety buckles on any car seats and in the backseat. Make sure the buckles won’t burn anyone strapped in.
- Drink plenty of water whenever you go outside.
- Take it easy if you’re spending more time outdoors. When increasing activity, you’re more likely to get tired and dehydrated.
- Schedule strenuous activity for the early morning or late afternoon so you avoid the mid-day heat.
- Spend time inside and in air-conditioning when outside temperatures reach their highs.
- Wear appropriate clothes such as hats and light-colored pants and shirts.
- Don’t take salt tablets unless your doctor specifically tells you to during the summer.
This Blog is sponsored by:
People’s Trust Insurance Company