By Kat Robinson, SEMO Times Columnist
Though the weather has been quite mild and enjoyable the last few days, we know it is not going to last. Summertime in Southeast Missouri can be fun, but the high temperatures and the humidity for which we are famous can also be down right dangerous. However, a few precautions can increase the fun time and keep it safe.
First, do not overdo it. Outdoor activities such as gardening and playing sports can allow the heat to sneak up on you. Make sure to keep hydrated and take breaks when you can, especially in the heat of the day, between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays appears to be the most important environmental factor involved in the development of skin cancer. Summertime can mean more time in the sun and more need to protect yourself from exposure to the sun’s rays. Try to keep yourself shaded, but if you must be in the sun, wear sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30.
The elderly and the very young are especially at risk during this time of the year, since they are not able to effectively counteract the effect of high temperatures on their bodies. These groups are prone to heat-related illnesses which occur due to a steady buildup of heat in the body that overwhelms the body’s capacity to cool itself.
Make sure your little ones stay safe. Children love to play outside. You can keep them sun-safe by applying that SPF, and again keeping them hydrated is very important. One thing that my kids loved in the summer was popsicles. They cool you down quickly and offer some hydration. You can make your own using fruit juice instead of the sugary premade ones. Although you should use caution as too much fruit can lead to diarrhea, another heat related issue.
Beware of heat stroke! Some things to look out for are:
The warmer weather is something we all take advantage of if we are careful.
Till next time, here’s to your healthy summer!
A yoga/healthy lifestyles instructor, Kat Robinson is the owner of Active Kat Yoga in Doniphan, which can be found online at www.activekatyoga.com. You can reach her by emailing, email@example.com.