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TOP TIPS TO STAY COOL AND SAFE THIS WEEKEND

With temperatures expected to hit 30c across the Isle of Wight this weekend and things hotting up once again today (Friday) also, the Isle of Wight NHS Trust have issued a number of top tips to help keep Islanders cool and safe.

As previously reported by Island Echo, local forecasters IW Met Service say that the heatwave will continue throughout the weekend with 28c possible on Saturday increasing to 30c on Sunday.

Next week also looks incredibly hot before things start to cool down a little.

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Dr Barbara Stuttle CBE, Director of Nursing and Community Services at Isle of Wight NHS Trust says:

“Hot weather can be dangerous for those with pre-existing conditions, especially serious chronic conditions. Ensure that you drink lots of water and stay out of the sun, preferably somewhere cool, if you can. If you have to go out in the sun make sure you cover-up – hats, loose fitting clothes and sun tan cream.

“We would urge everyone to ensure that they follow our top tips for staying cool and safe during this heatwave.”

The recent heatwave has seen an extra 50 people a day visit St Mary’s Hospital with around 180 visits to the emergency department – compared to an average day of 120. Extra beds have been made available to cope.

Top tips for keeping cool and safe:

• Shut windows and pull down the shades when it is hotter outside. You can open the windows for ventilation when it is cooler
• Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don’t go out between 11:00 and 15:00 (the hottest part of the day) if you’re vulnerable to the effects of heat
• Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn’t possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed (metallic blinds and dark curtains can make the room hotter)
• Have cool baths or showers, and splash yourself with cool water
• Drink cold drinks regularly, such as water and diluted fruit juice. Avoid excess alcohol, caffeine (tea, coffee and cola) or drinks high in sugar
• Plan ahead to make sure you have enough supplies, such as food, water and any medications you need
• Identify the coolest room in the house so you know where to go to keep cool
• Wear loose, cool clothing, and a hat and sunglasses if you go outdoors
• Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves

The main risks posed by a heatwave are:

dehydration (not having enough water)
• overheating, which can make symptoms worse for people who already have problems with their heart or breathing
• heat exhaustion and heatstroke

A heatwave can affect anyone, but the most vulnerable people are:

• older people, especially those over 75
• babies and young children
• people with a serious chronic condition, especially heart or breathing problems
• people with mobility problems – for example, people with Parkinson’s disease or who have had a stroke
• people with serious mental health problems
• people on certain medications, including those that affect sweating and temperature control
• people who misuse alcohol or drugs
• people who are physically active – for example, labourers or those doing sports

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