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Some Great Ways To Beat Extreme Heat In Very Hot Days

Updated on April 12, 2013

Hotter Days And Nights

Summer is approaching and temperature is rising every day. At the moment, the change is welcome, especially for all those who have had a heavy winter (and paid much for heating their homes, too). However, when the temperature goes so high that we will keep sweating and feeling weak, we will probably all miss the cold days and nights of winter.

Not everyone in the world is blessed to have cooling systems like Air-Conditioners (A-C) running all day and night long in their houses or work; some have spent much to equip their homes with them, but they realize that they can't afford the high electricity consumption cost for so long usage. Others cannot even afford to buy them.

The problem gets even worse in tropical climates, where heat combines with high humidity. In these circumstances, people sweat uncontrollably, do not perform well in their work (or for the students, they do not even feel like studying), feel weak, dizzy and sick and sometimes they even get health problems, like for example too low blood pressure which causes them to faint. The health dangers are way higher for people with particular risky health history, such as people who had suffered heart attack or stroke in the past, and elderly in general. Moreover, babies and children have also a higher risk when exposed to extreme heat, and this keeps parents concerned throughout the hot season.

However, there are a couple of tricks you can try to keep you and your beloved ones a bit cooler through very hot days, even if you cannot afford to cool your home with AC. The following tips are suitable for everyone, no matter if it's a child or an old person, and most of them do not cost at all. Some general suggestions are also included here on things you should avoid during heat and how you can protect against heat stroke.

Fruit Juice Icecubes

Using ice cubes made from fruit juice is a great way to add flavor and scent on your cold water.
Using ice cubes made from fruit juice is a great way to add flavor and scent on your cold water.

Cooling Towels

Cooling towels can aid in keeping your temperature down during hot season.
Cooling towels can aid in keeping your temperature down during hot season.

Ways To Beat The Heat

1. Drink much cold water... and I mean really much. Drink even if you are not thirsty and force your children to do so too.
2. Carry with you always a bottle of cool water to avoid dehydration when you are outside. It goes without saying that you need to protect against sun with sunglasses, sun lotion, light colored clothing and hat. When indoors, keep curtains closed during noon to help your house maintain the night's normal cooler temperatures. Furthermore, even if you cannot afford an air-condition unit, ceiling fans are relatively cheap, do not consume much electricity and can help the air rotate, which offers some cooling effect in the room.
3. Avoid soda drinks and any drinks which include sugars. Drinks with sugars DO NOT COOL YOU - the initial pleasing feeling of receiving something which is cold is eventually followed by a body reaction, which causes warmth: your body is trying to decompose the sugars you just received. I repeat: soda such as Coke or 7UP are not cooling you when it's hot, instead they make the situation worse. For the same reason, stay away of alcoholic drinks.
4. Natural fruit juices right out from the fridge, even with those fruit which are naturally very sweet, but with no added sugars, are an excellent addition for those moments when you need to drink something refreshing, but not water.
5. Dip a small hand towel in cold water and use it on your neck, chest to cool your body. When the towel isn't cool anymore, you can wet it with cold water again. This trick is particularly useful when you cannot seem to be able to fall asleep due to heat. It can help you cool down enough and hopefully you will be asleep by the time it's warm again. A good alternative which should last cold for longer, is if you dip the towel in water, then strain the excess water away and place the towel in the freezer. Try not to have the towel dripping wet, though. When it has frozen, you can use it for comforting you, but be careful because it isn't advised to place frozen things on your body for long - if the towel is totally frozen, do not use it for more than 5 minutes long at same part of the body. Also, do not use frozen towel on babies or kids, their cold resistance isn't as high as that of adults.
6. Use ice or ice cubes in your drinks (water or juices, as explained in advice number 1). Optionally, you can add fruit juice in the icecubes tray and let them freeze; they will provide tasty, flavored icecubes for your water.
7. You can keep on the side of your bed a small spray container with alcohol, for example the 70% one. Spray it on your back and chest often for the soothing, cool experience. This tip however might prove financially inefficient, if prices of alcohol are high in the place where you live.
8. You can use powders like Fissan on your chest, neck and back, to absorb sweat and give you some cooling effect, yet temporary. Particular versions of powder, such as with mint scent, boast that they can cool your body much.
9. Mind what you eat in days with much heat. Having long, heavy meals with high calories make your body generate heat on its own in its effort to digest. Aim for lightweight meals which contain fresh vegetables and fibres instead.
10. Shower as often as you can, with cold water. If you are among the lucky ones who live in a place which allows it, swim in the sea or lake too.

Animals Need Care, Too!

Last but not least, this heat isn't only hard for humans but for animals too. Keep an eye on your pets behavior and attend to them when they don't feel in mood. Cool them down with cold water, have their house in the shadow and don't forget to trim their hair, especially if your pet is furry. And don't forget the stray animals too; they need water too and it isn't always easy for them to find.

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