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Stay cool and beat the heat

15 Jan 2019


Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District Director of Public Health, Associate Professor Bradley Forssman, is reminding people to be cautious during the extreme heatwave conditions that are forecast for the rest of this week.

With temperatures expected to reach 40 degrees, Associate Professor Forssman has urged people to stay indoors during the heat of the day, minimise physical activity and keep hydrated during the heatwave.

“Heat puts a lot of strain on the body and can cause dehydration, heat stress and heat stroke. It can also make underlying health conditions worse.

“Some people in our community are at greater risk during hot weather. If you have elderly neighbours, friends or relatives I urge you to check they are managing the hot weather. Pregnant women, overweight people, babies and young children as well as those with chronic health conditions are also particularly vulnerable,” says Associate Professor Forssman.

Signs of heat-related illness include dizziness, tiredness, thirst, fainting, muscle pains or cramps, headache, rapid pulse, shallow breathing, vomiting and confusion.

“If you or someone you care for is showing signs of severe heat related symptoms, please visit a GP clinic or the emergency department and get checked out.”

Associate Professor Forssman’s top tips to beat the heat include:

  • drink plenty of water and avoid alcoholic, sugary and caffeinated drinks
  • whenever possible seek out shade, shelter in air conditioned buildings (such as shopping centres and libraries) or sit yourself near an electric fan
  • closing windows, doors, curtains and blinds at home during the day and opening them in the cool of the night can keep your home a little cooler
  • regularly check on others especially elderly friends and family, pregnant women, children, babies and those who are already unwell or have chronic health conditions.

More information and tips can be found on the NSW Health Beat the Heat website.

Multilingual resources are also available to download here.