June 2013

Stay cool

Avoid hyperthermia this summer

Stay cool

If last summer’s extreme temperatures are any indication, this summer will be a hot one.

Extreme temperatures can create severe health problems for anyone on the water. Whether you are lounging at the pool, fishing offshore, sailing along the coast or working on your boat, the sun and humidity can be life threatening if you aren’t paying attention.

Hyperthermia, or abnormally elevated body temperature, can be caused by overexposure to heat or overexertion in excessive temperatures. Signs of hyperthermia include thirst, dry tongue and mouth, muscle cramps, lightheadedness, weakness, mental dullness, headache, diarrhea, vomiting, and rapid pulse, progressing to unconsciousness and death.

Hyperthermia prevention steps

  1. Drink plenty of water. You can also drink electrolyte replacement drinks in moderation.
  2. Limit alcohol. Alcohol tends to dehydrate, not rehydrate.
  3. Wear light-colored, lightweight clothing and a light-colored hat with a large brim to provide protection from the sun.
  4. Get out of the elements for a while under an umbrella or Bimini, in an air-conditioned area, or under a shade tree.
  5. Try a bandana neck chiller. When you soak it in cold water, the beads inside get cold. Tie one of these innovative chillers around your neck and cool off without getting your clothes dripping wet.

I'll be drinking my water and trying to stay cool ... how about you?




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