Tragic news of a 12-year-old’s death while hiking with his mom’s boyfriend has hit the news. Cody Flim of Arizona was taken hiking on one of the hottest days of the year and collapsed in late afternoon, on the trail.
He was airlifted to hospital, where he later died.
Horribly sad stories like this one serve to remind us all how important it can be to listen to nature and stay safe in the heat.
According to CNN, six heat-related deaths have already been recorded throughout the U.S in a recent heat wave arriving in the Central and Eastern states. Staying safe is paramount. Here are some tips:
1) Get Yourself to a Cooling Center
If you don’t have air conditioning, don’t tough it out. Go out and have some fun in the local mall or a cooling center set up by the city. If it’s hard to get around, ask a neighbor, family member or friend to take you. If you find yourself in Detroit, the police and fire department are offering free rides to cooling centers in the city’s recreation center and public library, as well as distributing water to residents.
2) Make Sure to Take All Your Medications
It can be easy to forget now and then to take daily medications, but for those who have breathing problems such as asthma or COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), when the heat hits, it’s important to make sure you take them.
“For people with asthma, heat and humidity can make the act of getting enough air into their lungs very difficult,” said Dr. Michael Bessette, director of the Emergency Department at Jersey City Medical Center-Barnabas Health, in a statement on nj.com. “Heat and humidity make it difficult to lower one’s core body temperature, which keeps the body working longer and harder, increasing the need for oxygen.”
3) Stay Indoors
If you have to go outside, make sure that you wear a hat to protect yourself from the sun. If you can, simply stay indoors. If you have AC, keep it on, if not, keep the window shades drawn and the lights off.
4) Avoid Using the Oven
Cooking in the oven can add a lot of heat to the house. That’s great for winter, but bad for summer. Stick to the stove or items like sandwiches to avoid adding excess heat to your home.
5) Avoid Intense Activities Outside
Even if your activity is swimming in a cool pool, your time spent sitting on the side in the sun can drain you in extreme heat. Keep your outdoor activity to a minimum and if you must exercise outside, officials advise that you keep it light and in the early morning when temperatures are cooler.
According to CNN.com, the increase in temperatures could be a part of global warming.
NASA announced last week that every month in 2016 has been the hottest ever recorded. Take care.