Sunday, July 7, 2024

Essential summer safety tips for staying healthy in Florida heat

Florida News Connection
July 5, 2024

By: Trimmel Gomes

As the summer sun blazes, especially in the Sunshine State, it is easy to get caught up in the fun and excitement of the season. But according to health experts, staying mindful of hot weather health risks is crucial.

With searing temps causing a spike in emergency room visits for heat-related issues in some states, health experts said there are simple steps to stay cool and spot potential signs of overheating, including headaches, nausea or dizziness.

Dr. Del Carter, family medicine resident at Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare, said as a general rule, people should drink at least 64 ounces of water daily, or about eight glasses, and dress for the weather.

"Long, loose fitting clothing is helpful, sunscreen is definitely helpful to protect your skin as well," Carter outlined. "Then, really just trying to stay out of the environment when it is at its worst is going to be the most helpful things."

For being in and around water, he recommended ensuring protective barriers around pools, actively monitoring kids and wearing flotation devices. It is also smart to take swimming lessons and be CPR certified to ensure safety for all.

Heatstroke requires emergency treatment. Symptoms and signs include an altered mental state or behavior, nausea and vomiting, and a racing heart rate.

Donna O'Shea, chief medical Officer of population health for UnitedHealthcare, said virtual care is also an option for discussing symptoms with a healthcare professional.

"How long to wait before you go to the emergency room? Same thing, even for sunburns or for bike safety: 'Do I need to go in? Do you think I need stitches?'" O'Shea explained. "We don't think about that with virtual care, but the technology is really good."

O'Shea added among the benefits of virtual care is the ability to connect to someone for help 24/7, and most insurers offer it at no additional cost, including some of her company's plans.

Content for this Post is provided by Florida News Connection, a Bureau of Public News Service.  Public News Service is a member 

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