More than 20 million people are under a heat warning or advisory in the U.S. The effects of rising temperatures and extreme heat result in numerous illnesses and deaths each year.
For many people, warm weather is a time for fun-filled outdoor activities. However, hot weather and outdoor activities don’t always mix well, especially during extreme heat when temperatures are substantially hotter and more humid than average.
Extreme heat can cause people to suffer from heat-related illnesses and even death. People suffer heat-related illness when their bodies are unable to cool themselves properly. Older adults, young children, and people with chronic medical conditions are at high risk.
Warmer temperatures can mean higher ozone levels. Pay attention to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Quality Indexexternal icon when planning outdoor summer activities, especially if you have asthma or another lung disease.
When temperatures are extremely high, take steps to protect yourself and your loved ones:
- Stay in an air-conditioned indoor location as much as you can.
- Drink plenty of fluids even if you don’t feel thirsty.
- Schedule outdoor activities carefully.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing and sunscreen.
- Pace yourself.
- Take cool showers or baths to cool down.
- Check on a friend or neighbor and have someone do the same for you.
- Never leave children or pets in cars.
- Check the local news for health and safety updates.
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