Safety concerns for vulnerable as heatwave continues
PUBLISHED: 08:19 25 June 2020 | UPDATED: 08:19 25 June 2020
Temperatures are set to reach 30C across North Somerset today (Thursday) and health leaders are urging people to take extra care during the heatwave.
People shielding from Covid-19, older people, anyone with underlying health conditions and very young children are more vulnerable from the higher temperatures and are advised to stay out of the hot weather.
Dr Martin Jones, GP and medical director at Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (BNSSG CCG) said: “This summer, many of us are spending more time at home due to Covid-19, especially those who are shielding as they are at high risk of developing severe infection.
“It is important that we continue to check up on older people, and those with underlying health conditions, particularly if they are living alone and may be socially isolated as we know that a lot of homes can overheat.
“If you need to provide direct care to someone at risk from hot weather, follow Government guidance on how to do this safely. The most important advice is to ensure they stay hydrated, keep cool and know how to keep their homes cool.”
Everyone is encouraged to stay safe in the hot weather by applying sunscreen regularly, staying hydrated and protecting their heads from the sun.
Advice from the BNSSG CCG on how to stay safe include:
Drink plenty of fluids and avoid excess alcohol, everyone is at risk of dehydration in hot temperatures, but babies, children and older people are particularly vulnerable.
Stay cool indoors: open windows when the air feels cooler outside than inside; shade or cover windows exposed to direct sunlight; move to a cooler part of the house, especially for sleeping.
Slow down when it is hot: exertion heats up our bodies so plan any strenuous activities (such as exercise and gardening) outside the hottest time of the day, typically 11am-3pm.
Cool your skin with water, you could use a cool wet sponge or flannel, cool water spray, cold packs around the neck and armpits, or a cool, wet sheet.
Stay connected and listen to the weather forecast, knowing the forecast can help you plan ahead and adapt what you are doing.
Dress appropriately for the weather, protect yourself against the sun’s radiation and keep yourself cool by wearing thin cotton clothes.
Eat smaller meals, more often. Cold salads and fruit are the perfect summer foods.
For more information on the common signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke, log on to www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/heatwave-how-to-cope-in-hot-weather/
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