10 ways to avoid heat-related illness

The Kansas City Health Department wants you to stay safe in extreme heat. Follow these 10 guidelines to avoid heat-related illnesses.

1. Never leave children, pets or others alone in closed vehicles: within minutes, the temperature inside a car can reach over 140 degrees and can result in death.

2. If you have to work outside or in a non-air-conditioned workplace, take frequent breaks, rest in the shade or cooler environment, and drink plenty of water.

3. Check on your neighbors, friends and relatives at least twice a day (morning and night).

4. Avoid too much sunshine, and postpone outdoor activities and games.

5. Avoid extreme temperature changes, such as a taking a cool shower immediately after coming inside from hot temperatures.

6. Stay indoors as much as possible.

7. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to a public building every day for several hours.

8. Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs, to reduce heat and save money.

9. Conserve electricity not needed to keep you cool.

10. Dress for the weather: wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing; lightweight, light-colored clothing reflects heat and helps maintain normal body temperature. If you have to be outside, cover as much skin as possible to avoid sunburn. Protect your face and head with a wide-brimmed hat.

Heat safety information also can be found on the Health Department's Web page, www.kcmo.org/health .

For general information on signs and symptoms of heat-related illness, call the City's Action Center at 3-1-1 or 816-513-1313.

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