With temperatures expected to remain in the 90s through the weekend, here’s a look at some safety advice and locations for cooling stations.
Please visit your hometown’s website for more information on local cooling locations.
- Stay in air-conditioned buildings. Kane County cooling centers can be found by logging onto kanehealth.com/Documents/Air-Quality/CoolingWarmingLocations2018.pdf
- Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.
- Limit outdoor activity, especially midday when it is the hottest part of the day, and avoid direct sunlight.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
- Take cool showers or baths to lower your body temperature.
- Check on at-risk friends, family, and neighbors at least twice a day. These may include seniors and people with chronic health conditions.
- Drink more water than usual and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to hydrate.
- Drink two to four cups of water every hour while working or exercising outside.
- Avoid alcohol or beverages with high amounts of sugar.
- Check the local news for extreme heat warnings.
- Visit kanehealth.com/Pages/Heat.aspx for heat related information.
Normally, the body cools itself by sweating. However, if temperatures and humidity are extremely high, sweating is not effective in maintaining the body’s normal temperature.
If the body does not cool properly or does not cool enough, a person may suffer a heat-related illness, which can become serious or even deadly if unattended. Warning signs and symptoms vary but may include:
- Heavy sweating
- Skin cold, pale, and clammy
- Weak pulse, fainting and vomiting
What You Should Do
- Move to a cooler location
- Lie down and loosen your clothing
- Apply cool, wet cloths to as much of your body as possible
- Sip water
- If you have vomited and it continues, seek medical attention immediately
- High body temperature (above 103 degrees F)
- Hot, red, dry or moist skin
- Rapid and strong pulse
- Possible unconsciousness
What You Should Do
- Call 911 immediately – this is a medical emergency
- Move the person to a cooler location
- Reduce the person’s body temperature with cool cloths or a bath
- Do NOT give fluids
People most vulnerable for heat-related illness include the elderly, those who work or exercise outdoors, infants and children, the homeless or poor, and people with a chronic medical condition.
The Illinois Department on Aging encourages relatives and friends to make daily visits or calls to senior citizens living alone.
When temperatures and humidity are extremely high, seniors and people with chronic health conditions should be monitored for dehydration and other effects of extreme heat.
Additionally, seniors should eat lighter meals, take longer and more frequent rests, and drink plenty of fluids.
Never leave anyone, including pets, alone in a closed, parked vehicle. The air temperature inside a car rises rapidly during hot weather and can lead to brain damage or death.
Log onto kanehealth.com/Pages/Heat.aspx for more heat safety information.
SOURCE: Kane County Health Department news release