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Tips to cool off during dangerous heat

Posted: 6:35 PM, Jul 20, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-20 19:35:46-04

Right now, Acadiana is under a heat advisory. 

Friday, the heat index burned past the triple-digit mark. While we’re used to the sweltering conditions, that heat could still prove dangerous. It’s important to take care of yourself and make sure you and your loved ones stay safe while outside.

"The heat is intense, but I’m enjoying being out here and the umbrella isn’t too bad," said Masi Romero.

She loves summer and spending time with her kids. Like many families, Romero is constantly looking for ways to beat the heat. She’s taking advantage of free activities like the splash pad at St. Julien Park in Broussard.

"This is a great place for them to come, cool off, get some energy out and go home and take a nap after," Romero said.

If you’re planning to be in the sun, doctors say it’s important to hydrate before you get thirsty.

"Water is probably the best thing to drink if you’re sweating a lot and you’re out in the sun," said Dr. Gregory Morgan of Lourdes Physician Group. "You can also drink Powerade or Gatorade. Avoid caffeine and alcohol."

Doctor Morgan also says even if you are escaping the heat by playing in the water or pool, you can still get dehydrated.

"Take breaks in the shade. Stay in the shade as much as you can. Avoid the sun from 10 am – 4pm, that’s when the UV index is the highest."

Dr. Morgan says apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.

"It’s important to apply it at least 30 minutes before you go outside," said Dr. Morgan. "It takes time to get absorbed. It’s also key to reapply every two hours." 

It’s also important to listen to your body.

"The common thing is feeling fatigued, tired, headache, muscle cramps or you get nauseous. At this point, I recommend going lay down, drink water, get in a cool environment," said Dr. Morgan.

If you start developing a high grade fever typically over 104 degrees or you start having confusion or seizures, you could be having a heat stroke. Doctors say at this point, it’s best to call 911.