Tips to Avoid Heat Exhaustion
Whether you are working on your front garden on a hot summer day or doing construction on a brand new interstate it is very important to understand the dangers of working in the heat.
Heat stroke and Heat exhaustion are the leading weather related killer in the United States
Here are some essentials if you choose to work in the heat this summer
Everyone has been told to drink water when working in the heat or on something that is very stressing on your body. However, many people under estimate the amount of water intake they should have if they plan on working in the heat. You should drink up to 8 fluid ounces every 15-20 minutes. Pre hydration is also very important if you are asked to work early in the morning. Hydrating before going to bed and eating a nutritious meal the night before can eliminate the chances of heat related illnesses while working in the heat the next morning.
WORK EARLY AND LESS OFTEN
Plan on doing most of your outside work early in the morning between 6:00 AM and 10:00 AM. Avoiding summer afternoons allows you stay protected from dangerous heat and humidity. If working in afternoon is unavoidable it is important to take more breaks during work. OSHA layouts the importance of having designated shaded areas for individuals that are working in the heat.
Wear lightweight clothing that are made with organic clothing materials such as cotton. Cotton breathes very easily allowing your body to stay cooler while sweating. Cooling vests can be used by individuals that are asked to work in the heat during throughout the day such as construction or factory workers. Wearing proper headwear is also very important to keep your face shaded while working in the heat, you can find several different styles of headwear made specifically for working in the heat.
Drinking coffee or carbonated drinks might seem refreshing during a hot summer day but they actually dehydrate you. Avoid your morning cup of coffee and substitute it with a tall glass of lemon water if you plan on working in the heat that day. Avoid drinking beer either the day of your shift or the night before if you plan on working in the heat. Alcohol dehydrates your body and can increase your chances of heat illness.