With the summer holidays here, many of us are hoping for warmer and drier weather so that we can make the most of spending time outdoors. However, it’s important to remember that hot weather can pose a health risk and there are some simple precautions you can take to ensure you enjoy a safe and healthy summer.
To protect your skin from sun damage it is vital to regularly apply sunscreen with a SPF of at least 15. You should also spend time in the shade when the sun is at its strongest – usually between 11am and 3pm in the UK. Extra care should be taken to protect babies and children.
Longer and warmer days can increase the symptoms of exhaustion and dehydration, especially for people with health issues such as diabetes or high blood pressure, so it’s very important to stay hydrated.
Insect bites and stings are a common irritation and most can be treated with simple first-aid measures, such as applying a cold flannel or taking antihistamines as a cream or hay fever tablets – your pharmacist can advise you. But if you or someone you know suffers a severe allergic reaction, you should seek urgent medical advice from NHS 111 or your GP.
Barbecues are a favourite summer treat and so it is important to follow some simple steps to avoid food poisoning. These include checking meat is fully cooked before eating, washing your hands with soap after handling raw food and ensuring cold food is refrigerated.
For more summer health tips visit http://www.nhs.uk/