Saturday 16 December 2017

Elderly and infirm warned to take precautions in heat

Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

DEATHS among people aged 75 and over can rise by up to 60pc during a heatwave, the chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan has warned.

He said people with heart, respiratory and serious health problems were more at risk of adverse effects of very warm weather, while babies and young children were also in increased danger.

Dr Holohan and Dr Kevin Kelleher of the HSE issued a series of tips on staying well during the extreme heat, saying it is "mostly a matter of common sense".

They appealed to people to check in on elderly, ill or very young people and make sure they are able to keep cool.

Other tips offered were:

* Keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm.

* If you have to go out in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen with UVA protection and wear a hat and light scarf. If you have children, make sure they are properly protected as their skin is extra sensitive.

* Avoid extreme physical exertion.

* Wear sunglasses.

* Drink plenty of cold drinks, and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks.

* Eat cold foods, particularly salads and fruit with a high water content.

* Take a cool shower, bath or body wash.

* Sprinkle water over the skin or clothing, or keep a damp cloth on the back of your neck.

Irish Independent

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