The following tips may help prevent a
heat-related illness. Be aware of the symptoms of heat-related illnesses and
the warning signs of
heat safety measures when you are physically active in
hot weather. This is especially important for outdoor workers and military
personnel. Avoid strenuous activity in hot, humid weather or during the hottest
part of the day (between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.). Use caution during your physical
activity in the heat if you have
Drink plenty of water
before, during, and after you are active. This is very important when it's hot
out and when you do intense exercise.
Fluids such as
rehydration drinks, juices, or water help replace lost
fluids, especially if you sweat a lot.
Drink on schedule. Two hours before
24 fl oz (750 mL) of fluid.
Drink 16 fl oz (500 mL) of
fluid 15 minutes before exercising. Continue drinking
8 fl oz (250 mL) of fluid every
15 minutes while exercising.
rehydration drinks, which are absorbed as quickly as water but
also replace sugar, sodium, and other nutrients. Eat fruits and vegetables to
Check your urine. Urine should be clear to pale
yellow, and there should be a large amount if you are drinking adequately. You
should urinate every 2 to 4 hours during an activity when you are staying
properly hydrated. If your urine output decreases, drink more fluids.
Do not spend much time in the sun. If possible,
exercise or work outside during the cooler times of the day. Wear lightweight,
clothing in hot weather, so your skin can cool through
evaporation. Wear a wide-brimmed hat or use an umbrella for
Stay cool as much as possible. Take frequent breaks in the
shade, by a fan, or in air-conditioning. Cool your skin by spraying water over
your body. Take a cool bath or shower 1 or 2 times a day in hot
If you have to stand for any length of time in a hot
environment, flex your leg muscles often while standing. This prevents blood
from pooling in your lower legs, which can lead to fainting. To prevent
swelling (heat edema), wear support hose
to stimulate circulation while standing for long periods of time.
Do not drink caffeine or alcohol. They
increase blood flow to the skin and increase your risk of dehydration.
Staying physically fit can help you
acclimate a hot environment. Before you travel to or
work in a hotter environment, use gradual physical conditioning. This takes
about 8 to 14 days for adults. Children require 10 to 14 days for their bodies
to acclimate to the heat. If you travel to a hot environment and are not
accustomed to the heat, cut your usual outside physical activities in half for
the first 4 to 5 days. Gradually increase your activities after your body
adjusts to the heat and level of activity.