Health Watch - July Fourth: Adjusting to Heat

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


The Fourth of July is celebrated with picnics, cookouts and fireworks displays. Before you head outdoors for the holiday, we’ve got some Health Watch tips for enjoying it safely. The summer weather outdoors could require some adjustment if you spend most of your time in the air-conditioned indoors.

Dr. Paul Pepe, chief of emergency medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says people who spend their weekdays in air conditioning may have trouble outdoors on summer weekends because their bodies don’t get a chance to adjust to the heat. To stay safe in summer heat, wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing. Stay in well-ventilated areas, even outdoors. Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid alcohol, caffeine or too much sugar. Plain water is best for hydration. Use the buddy system and look out for signs of trouble, like dizziness, nausea or confusion.

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June 2010


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