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Tips for staying cool in summer

July and August can be two of the hottest months of the year and a good time to offer reminders of how to stay cool during the summer months.

Here are some good tips from our friends at the Ohio Development Services Agency for staying cool this summer:


Drink Cool Fluids

• Increase your fluid intake when the temperatures heat up. Drinking water is best.

• Do not take salt tablets without a healthcare provider’s advice.

• Avoid beverages that contain alcohol or caffeine as they can add to dehydration and increase the effects of heat illnesses.


Monitor or Limit Outdoor Activities

• Young children may become preoccupied with outdoor play and not realize they are overheated. Adults should mandate frequent breaks and bring children indoors to cool down and have cool drinks.

• Children or adolescents involved in team sports should be closely monitored for signs of heat stress.

Consideration should be given to modifying practice or games during the hottest parts of the day.

Know How to Treat Heat Exhaustion

• Symptoms of heat exhaustion include: heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea or fainting.

• People experiencing these symptoms should be moved to a shady or air-conditioned area. Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet cloths or towels.

• Have the person sip on a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes. If the person refuses water, vomits, or loses consciousness, call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number.


Know How to Treat Heat Stroke

• Heat stroke is a life-threatening situation. Call 9-1-1 immediately. Symptoms include: a body temperature of 103 degrees or higher; red, hot and dry skin with no sweating; rapid pulse; headache; dizziness; nausea; confusion; unconsciousness; and gray skin color.

• Before medical help arrives, begin cooling the person by any means possible, such as spraying them with water from a garden hose, or by placing the person in a cool tub of water.

Needing some additional assistance to help you stay cool this summer? The Ohio Development Services Agency offers the Summer Crisis Program to provide assistance to low-income households with someone age 60 years or older, or households that can provide physician documentation that cooling assistance is needed for a household member’s health.

Eligible households can receive up to $175 to purchase an air conditioner or fan and/or to assist in the payment of an electric bill.

For more information and to learn more about additional eligibility requirements for the program and to identify the local partner in your county, please call 1-800-282-0880 or log on to www.energyhelp.ohio.gov.

For more information about home and community-based long-term care options in your community, call the Area Agency on Aging District 7 Aging and Disability Resource Center Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4:30 pm at 1-800-582-7277.

A trained social worker or nurse is available to help connect you with resources that can assist you or someone you know with living safely and independently at home.


Pamela K. Matura is executive director of the Area Agency on Aging District 7. For more information, call (800) 582-7277.