Health officials, National Weather service offer tips to keep cool

With an anticipated heat index exceeding of 100 degrees Thursday, the National Weather Service issued an Excessive Heat Warning for the first time in four years, according to its website.

“When warm temperatures combine with high humidity, conditions feel warmer than the actual air temperature,” the website stated. “We can quantify these conditions by the Heat Index.”

In response to expected rising temperatures, the National Weather Service issued an Excessive Warning, a first since July 3-7, 2012.

“It’s been awhile since we’ve had the potential for heat of this magnitude,” the website added.

As a result, local officials are encouraging everyone stay cool, including limiting outdoor exposure, a Kenosha County Division of Health press release said.

“Temperatures are expected to rise to the mid-90s, with heat indexes reaching a potential dangerous 95-108 degree range,” the release noted.

The release warned that heat is one of the leading causes of weather-related deaths, with the elderly and children most at risk, along with people who have chronic or mental health conditions.

“Check on neighbors throughout the day who may need assistance to protect themselves against dangerous temperatures,” the release said.

General heat exhaustion symptoms include fainting, rash, fatigue, nausea along with clammy/moist skin, or hot and dry skin.

“Heat stroke can come on rapidly and may progress to life-threatening illness within minutes,” the release said.

Take immediate action if heat-related symptoms occur, including taking a cool shower, bath or sponge bath and wearing wet clothing, which offers a cooling effect, the release stated.

For people without air conditioning, they are encouraged to visit an air-conditioned facility, like a public building, shopping malls, a library or a senior center.

The release noted that some places have cooling centers, which are found by dialing 211.

Never leave anyone, especially children or pets, in a parked car – even briefly. Temperatures in a car can become life threatening within minutes. On an 80-degree day, the temperature inside a car, even with the windows cracked slightly, can reach 100 degrees in less than 10 minutes.

Keep your living space cool. Cover windows to keep the sun from shining in. If you don’t have an air conditioner, open windows to let air circulate. When it’s hotter than 95 degrees, use fans. Basements or ground floors are usually cooler than upper floors.

Slow down and limit physical activity. Plan outings or exertion for the early morning or after dark when temperatures are cooler.

Drink plenty of water and eat lightly. Do not wait for thirst, but instead drink plenty of water throughout the day. Avoid alcohol or caffeine and stay away from hot, heavy meals.

Wear lightweight, loose-fitting, light-colored clothing. Add a hat or umbrella to keep your head cool, and don’t forget sunscreen.

Don’t stop taking medication unless your doctor says you should. Take extra care to stay cool and ask your doctor or pharmacist for any special heat advice as some medications can react adversely with increasing temperatures.


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