Manitoba is a province that’s known for its fiercely cold winters – what most people don’t know is that our summers pack a powerful punch of heat, too. The scorching sun and muggy humidity can be tough to handle; without the proper preparations, it can even cause heat exhaustion or heatstroke. High temperatures aren’t merely uncomfortable – they can be downright dangerous, especially for those with cardiovascular issues. Equip yourself and your home to handle this season by following these suggestions to beat the summer heat:
Drink lots of fluids. Sweating can cause you to lose hydration. While the air might be moist, your body is losing fluids; in the summer months, it’s especially important to drink lots of water. Try to drink a glass of water every hour.
Stay inside during the afternoon. The mornings and evenings are the coolest times of day – at noon, the sun is high and blazing. If possible, stay inside midday to reduce your exposure to the highest temperatures.
Use cotton bed sheets. This breathable fabric allows you to stay cool while you’re asleep. Cotton sheets are both light and comfortable. Switch out your heavy flannel sheets for a lighter fabric to enjoy a cooler sleep.
Buy a fan. For those looking for heat solutions on a budget, investing in a fan will add some much-needed air movement to a stagnant space. It won’t be as nearly as effective as an AC unit, but it won’t break the bank, either.
Wear loose clothing. Restricted fabrics will prevent any airflow between your skin and your clothes. Wear something light and non-form fitting, like loose shorts or a t-shirt, to let the air cool your skin.
Draw the blinds and curtains. Exposed windows can be a surprisingly big source of heat. Purchase sun blockers to protect your home from the sun – insulated drapes are an effective way to handle this issue. One DIY solution is to hang a damp towel in front of the window, which will cool the air that is flowing into your home.
Take a cold shower. Instantly cool your body by jumping in an ice-cold shower – some might shiver at this suggestion, but it’s an effective way to quickly lower your temperature.
Avoid using the oven. While it’s a great way to cook, using the oven is also a sure-fire way to heat your home. Instead, prepare foods that don’t require an oven, like microwave meals. Appliances like rice cookers are one way to make hot food without creating excess heat.
Eat cold foods. There’s more to cool foods than feasting on ice-cream (although that’s certainly an option); instead, eat things like fruits, salads, and sandwiches. You can replenish your body with cold nutrition, which will help to thwart away heatstroke.
Buy a dehumidifier. This is a fairly inexpensive way to eliminate moisture from the air. Houses that are overly humid will benefit from adding a dehumidifier to the space.
Keep your windows closed. This might seem counter-intuitive, but open windows provide an easy way for heat and humidity to enter your home. Close the windows to ensure that the unwanted heat stays outside.
Know your body’s cooling points. The wrist and neck are sensitive temperature zones on your body. Cool down quickly by pressing an ice cube against these areas.
Beware of the signs of heat illnesses. If you are experiencing nausea, fatigue, headaches, confusion, disorientation, or muscle spasms, then you may have a heat illness. Heatstroke can be dangerous – in this case, call for medical assistance.
Update your AC system. Let’s face it: the optimal way to handle the heat and humidity is to invest in a quality air conditioning system. There is no better way to cool the air and remove moisture than by installing a high-quality, energy-efficient HVAC unit. Handling the heat this summer will require an efficient AC system – a broken or faulty unit simply won’t cut it. If you are looking for AC installation and/or AC repair companies in Winnipeg, contact Provincial Heating and Cooling.
This summer, prepare for the heat by following the above guidelines to avoid getting a heat-induced illness. Those with cardiovascular issues should take extra precautions to avoid heat exhaustion or heatstroke. Stay cool this season by drinking lots of water, eating cold foods, wearing loose clothing, and investing in a quality air conditioning system.