Health : Effect of heat waves on health and anti-heat advice

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Health :

Effect of heat waves on health and anti-heat advice

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In recent years, waves of extremely hot (or very cold) weather are felt all over the world. Until a few weeks ago, a good part of Europe was affected by such a hot weather wave. Today, we will talk about the influence of heat waves on our health and their effects on our daily lives. We will also share with you our tips for fighting the heat wave.

Effect of heat waves on health and anti-heat advice

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You have not noticed, warm weather and heat waves can affect the body and health both positively and negatively.

The positive effects of hot weather

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With the arrival of astronomical summer, the days become longer and the nights shorter. This is one of the reasons why, during this season, it is much hotter. The warm weather has some advantages but can also affect the body in a negative way. Let's first look at the positive effects of the hot climate. Then we will go over tips for fighting the heat wave.

Exposure to sunlight allows us to fight against certain diseases

When it's hot and the sun is shining, we can take advantage of it to collect more vitamin D. This is important for our health and also affects our mood. Higher levels of vitamin D are important for the prevention of diabetes and osteoporosis.

The sun's rays are the source of good mood

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A 2004 study states that sunlight can affect our mood. In it, researchers at the University of Michigan say that people who spent at least 30 minutes outside in warm, sunny weather were in a much better mood. Conversely, when it is cold and we lack sun, we are more exposed to depression. According to the results of this study, the sun's rays lead to increased serotonin and endorpbin production. As a result, melatonin and serotonin hormone levels are reduced.

To increase your vitamin D levels, you do not have to spend a lot of time exposed to sunlight

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In recent years, we have become more sensitive to the effects of exposure to sunlight on skin health. As we know, prolonged exposure to the sun, especially in very hot weather, can have negative effects on the skin. This causes skin aging and also exposes you to a risk of burns and skin cancer. Other health risks include heat shock and dehydration.

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Fortunately, to benefit from the positive effects of vitamin D on the body, you do not have to spend a lot of time exposed to the sun. Researchers say that 77% of people in the world suffer from vitamin D deficiency. But the time needed to fix such problems is estimated at only 15 minutes.

An exposure of about 15 minutes would be enough for the body to start synthesizing vitamin D. Researchers also advise us to practice reasonable sun exposure. The best times for this would be in the morning until 10:00 and in the afternoon after 17:00.

Hot weather boosts physical activity

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Hot weather also stimulates physical activity. This is another advantage of the spring and summer season because when the weather is hot and the sun is shining, you become more motivated to exercise. This is even more true when more time during the holidays. Recent research has shown that there is a tendency to increase productivity during the spring and summer seasons. This can increase by almost 50%, especially after a period of physical activity.

According to other studies, the warm weather pushes us to spend more time outdoors. On hot, sunny days, you do not want to stay at home. Instead, we prefer activities outside. This is especially true for younger people. This part of the population is much more active in the summer than in the winter.

The warm climate can be good for your health

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Warm weather can be good for your health. This is particularly the case for the heart and lungs. Conversely, cold weather can have a negative impact on health, especially on the heart and respiratory system. In addition, during the summer months, the blood pressure decreases.

The warm weather reduces the risk of developing fungal and fungal infections

The warm weather also makes it possible to wear open shoes. This reduces the risk of leg sweating and the spread of mycosis-like infections. These tend to develop when wearing closed shoes in winter.

The negative effects of hot weather, hot weather and hot weather

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So far, we have talked about the positive effects of hot weather. But you should also know that high temperatures and heat waves can have negative effects on your health.

Exposure to strong heat can cause illness or death to some people. In addition, exposure to the sun during the hottest hours of the day is linked to a high risk of aging skin and diseases, such as cancer. The high heat is also associated with dangers for children and for the elderly, as well as for people suffering from certain diseases.

To protect yourself and your loved ones, there are several preventative measures to take into account. Here are our tips for fighting heatwave that could help you in this case.

Fight against extreme heat and heat wave - pay attention to the temperatures

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The first thing to note when dealing with problems related to extreme heat is the optimal temperature for the body. This temperature is generally between 35.5 and 37.5 ° C. This temperature is considered as the optimal life point of our vital organs and the functioning of the body.

It should be noted that outside temperatures are not the only factor to consider. The body temperature also increases through the metabolic processes inside it. Conversely, it drops partially thanks to sweat.

Fight against heatwave - the simple gestures to know

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The easiest way to fight the heat wave is to adopt a behavior adapted to the temperature outside. For example, when it is extremely hot, you can stay in the shade or inside the house. You can opt for an air-conditioned space or use fans to circulate the air.

When body temperature rises faster than heat loss, there is a risk of health problems. The impact of high temperatures on the body may be different. It can result in mild effects, such as cramps or life-threatening. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), heat stroke is a medical emergency. Depending on the case, it can lead to rapid death in 10% to 50% of cases. It can also have other negative health effects in the short term.

Fight against hot weather and heat - people most at risk

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Those most at risk of heat-related illness are those over 65, infants and young children, pregnant women and lactating women. People who have difficulty communicating and moving are also in the group considered to be at high risk. This is because these people depend on others to hydrate themselves and to have access to water. The same principle also applies to the elderly.

Exposure to heatwaves or extreme heat has particularly harmful effects in people with chronic diseases. These include cardiovascular disease, respiratory and kidney disease. People with diabetes and obesity are also a high risk group. Globally, these people account for a high proportion of deaths due to the heat wave.

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In addition, people who work outdoors are also at high risk when exposed to very high temperatures. This is especially the case if their work involves exposure to direct light. Excessive use of drugs or alcohol increases the risk of heat-related illnesses. These effects can be explained by the fact that the drugs affect thermoregulation and the alcohol acts as a diuretic.

In addition, it should be noted that your area or home can also affect how you feel the high temperatures. For example, people who live in multi-story buildings and homes without outside shade are more likely to be affected by extreme heat than others. In general, this sensation increases in the big cities.

Fight against heatwave - how to prepare for a wave of hot weather

Nowadays, we are fortunate to be well informed and to have access to sources of information related to high temperature and heat waves. In summer, when there is a high risk of this type of phenomenon, it is advisable to follow the weather alerts in order to be able to prepare in advance. This is especially important for people at risk of health problems related to the heat wave.

How to prepare for a wave of heat - actions to fight the heat wave

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To prepare for a heat wave, you can start by getting one or more fans. These will allow us to fight against the sensation of strong heat especially in the living rooms and in the bedrooms. Remember that some people may need help getting their homes out of fans or running them.

If you have air conditioning at home, make sure it works properly before the heat wave arrives. This is especially important if you use the air conditioning also for heating your home. In this case, also make sure that the cooling function is clearly indicated and that it works well.

For all people in extremely hot weather, access to liquids is very important. If you are forced to stay at home during the heat wave, it is essential to have enough food, drinks and medicine for the entire period.

If the heat inside the house is too high, consider moving to colder places in the house. Protect your home from the heat by lowering the blinds, closing the curtains or shutters. Before the arrival of a heat wave, you can have shade sails or canvases installed on your pergola. Older people and those with reduced mobility could develop a list of contacts to use to ask for help and to do this more easily.

Measures to fight the heatwave and strong heat to take

In addition to these tips for fighting heatwaves and hot weather, here are some steps you can take during the heat wave.

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Spend part of the day in an air-conditioned space

Access to air conditioning is clearly protective in case of high heat and heat wave. If you do not have access to air conditioning in your home, you can go to an air-conditioned public area. Examples of such spaces are cinemas, shopping malls, libraries ... People who are at high risk of heat-related health problems could make a list of such spaces near their homes. residential homes. They could move more easily during the cooler times of the day.

Stay in touch and drink enough water

In extremely hot weather, do not forget to keep in touch with your friends and family. Stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids even if you are not thirsty. A simple way to do this is to drink small amounts often. Do not drink alcohol and limit your consumption of tea and coffee because these drinks are diuretic.

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Choose the cool moments for your activities

Stay away from the sun, especially during the hottest times of the day. If you have tasks to do outside, try finishing them early in the morning when it's still cool. If you have to cook, adopt the same strategy, as this will help you avoid making your home even hotter when temperatures are high outside.

Lower temperatures

To make your home more pleasant in hot weather, know that lowering the temperatures in a room is easier and cheaper than doing it for the entire interior space. For this reason, we advise you to try to lower the temperatures in your room two or three hours before going to bed. During hot weather, open windows do not always bring freshness to the interior of the house. If this is the case at home, consider opening the windows during the night when it is cooler outside. You could close them when the sun shines brightly during the day.

Eat small portions

Food is important in hot weather, although high temperatures can cause a decrease in appetite. To remedy this, eat several small portions frequently. We advise you to avoid cooking dishes that require a lot of heat or to do it early in the morning when it is still cool. If you are particularly sensitive to heat, try to limit your physical activity and to rest more.

Stay informed

To stay informed of weather alerts, follow the info broadcasts. You can also keep informed and learn more about the right actions via the internet, thanks to information on the website of the Ministry of Solidarity and Health.

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