Even as summer set in, and people head off to cooler climes, those of us who live in warmer parts of the country could do well to follow the inside scoop on staying cool.
- Running cold water over your wrists for five seconds, a couple of times a day, causes the main vein passing through this area, to help cool the bloodstream.
- Eating spicy food like curries and chillies, stimulate heat receptors in the mouth, enhancing circulation and causing you to sweat. This cools down the body, and enables you feel good.
- Taking a lukewarm bath or shower especially before bedtime, enables your body to maintain its regular temperature. While a cold shower may sound more tempting, your body generates heat afterwards to compensate for the heat loss.
- Wearing light-coloured cotton clothes of a lighter fabric, reflects the sun’s radiation, absorbs perspiration and assists evaporation.
- Keeping your curtains drawn while you are out, stops your house heating up like a greenhouse.
- Avoiding alcohol in summer, helps keep off dehydration. Opt for mineral water or low-sugar fizzy drinks, instead of caffein-laden drinks like coffee and colas, which increase metabolic heat.
- Drinking chrysanthemum tea, which contains the cooling herb chrysanthemum, is said to clear the head.
- Swapping your synthetic foam pillows and synthetic pillowcases with feather or down pillows and cotton pillowcases, will keep you cooler at night. Synthetic pillows and pillowcases will retain heat.
- Popping damp flannel towelettes in the freezer and taking them with you on your days out, will enable you to keep cool under the summer sun.
Be aware of those at-risk, from higher temperatures
Some people are at greater risk than others, although anyone can suffer from heat-related illness.
Those who need regular and special checks on are:
- Infants and children up to 4 years of age
- People over 65, particularly those who have health problems involving their heart, kidneys, or lungs
- Those who are overweight
- People taking diuretics, sedatives, tranquilisers, antihistamines. Especially those taking medication which interferes with their ability to perspire
- Those who overwork or exercise excessively in the heat
- Those who are dehydrated or have poor circulation, reducing their body’s ability to deliver blood to the skin
- People with mental illnesses
Having said all the above, summer is a time to get in plenty of fresh air and enjoy the outdoors. This can sure be a fun time, provided some simple rules and tips are followed. Happy summer to you.