Dudley CCG is urging people to take extra care as we experience “heatwave” conditions over the next few days, according to Met Office forecasts.
Dr Steve Mann from Dudley CCG is reminding local people that heat is especially dangerous for the very young, older people or those with serious illnesses. In particular, it can make heart and respiratory problems worse.
In addition, heat exhaustion can be extremely unpleasant, while heat stroke, can in severe cases be life threatening.
People suffering from heat exhaustion generally experience symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, muscle weakness or cramps, pale skin and high temperature.
To combat the hot weather we recommend that people keep cool, drink plenty of water or squash and take a lukewarm shower, sponge yourself with cold water or use an electric fan.
Suffers of heatstroke would experience many of the symptoms associated with heat exhaustion, but could also display, intense thirst, sleepiness, hot, red, and dry skin, a sudden rise in temperature and aggression, confusion, convulsions or loss of consciousness.
Heat Stroke requires medical attention, if you, a relative or friend is displaying signs of heatstroke contact NHS 111 for advice.
In order to stay well and avoid conditions such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke, NHS Dudley is recommending the following simple tips:
Stay Out of the heat
- Try to keep out of the sun, especially people with serious health problems (for example heart conditions)
- If you go out in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a hat
- Avoid extreme physical exertion.
- Wear light, loose-fitting cotton clothes.
Cool yourself down
- Have plenty of cold drinks, and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks.
- Eat cold foods, particularly salads and fruit with a high water content.
- Take a cool shower, or bath.
- Sprinkle water over the skin or clothing, or keep a damp cloth on the back of your neck.
- Use an electric fan
Keep your environment cool
- Keeping your living space cool is especially important for infants, the elderly or those with chronic health conditions or who can’t look after themselves
- Place a thermometer in your main living room and bedroom to keep a check on the temperature.
- Keep windows that are exposed to the sun closed during the day, and open windows at night when the temperature has dropped.
- Close curtains that receive morning or afternoon sun. However, care should be taken with metal blinds and dark curtains, as these can absorb heat – consider replacing or putting reflective material in-between them and the window space.
- Turn off non-essential lights and electrical equipment – they generate heat.
- Keep indoor plants and bowls of water in the house as evaporation helps cool the air.
- If possible, move into a cooler room, especially for sleeping.
- Electric fans may provide some relief.
Look out for others
- Keep an eye on isolated, elderly, ill or very young people and make sure they are able to keep cool.
- Ensure that babies, children, elderly people and dogs are not left alone in stationary cars.
- Check on elderly or sick neighbours, family or friends every day during a heatwave.
- Be alert and call a doctor or social services if someone is unwell or further help is needed.
Steve Mann, Dudley GP and Clinical Executive, Dudley CCG said: “Hot weather, whilst pleasant can be uncomfortable for some of us. However, it can be especially dangerous for the very young, older people or those with serious illnesses.
We can all ensure we stay well during warm spells by drinking plenty of water or squash, staying in the shade where possible and looking after more vulnerable friends and relatives.”