Before the Event
Due to the tropical temperatures of South Florida, heat exhaustion and other heat-related illnesses become a consideration when the power goes out and homes are without air-conditioning. Problems can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids.
Here are some tips to help alleviate heat-related illnesses:
- Drink cool, non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages. If your doctor limits the amount of fluid you drink or you take water pills, ask how much you should drink when the weather is hot. Also, avoid extremely cold liquids because they can cause cramps.
- Eat small meals and eat more often. Avoid foods that are high in protein which increase metabolic heat.
- Rest periodically.
- Take a cool shower, bath or sponge bath.
- If possible, seek an air-conditioned environment such as a mall or public library, if they have power.
- Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing. Light colors will reflect away some of the sun's energy. It's a good idea to wear a hat.
- If possible, remain indoors during the hottest part of the day.
- Avoid strenuous activities. If you must do strenuous activity, do it during the coolest part of the day, which is usually in the morning between 4:00 AM and 7:00 AM.
Updated June 2015