We hope, every year, that the week of “triple-digit” temperatures we know is coming won’t come. But every year it does.
And it has. Come Tuesday, the forecasters say, we’ll be down to a high of 90, which after three days of 100-degree highs will seem chilly. Why, some of those winter coats may come out.
No, they won’t. The truth is, North Carolina won’t see much of a break in hot, humid weather until September, and in our minds at least, it seems that each year, the beginning of fall gets closer and closer to Thanksgiving.
But hot weather is no kidding-around matter for great numbers of people, and the TV and online forecasters hereabouts always use the arrival of those 100-degree days as a call to caution. And they’re right.
Here, assembled from a variety of sources, are the best pieces of advice for the hottest days ahead:
Don’t ever stop drinking water during the day, and make sure that the young and the old in particular stay hydrated throughout the day and even. And younger and middle-aged folks are subject to heat problems from dehydration, so they shouldn’t get overconfident just because they are young in years.
If you’re on medications such as diuretics or beta blockers, you are at greater risk of heat exhaustion and need to stay as cool as you can.
Watch the kids. Children can be oblivious to the heat and will engage in their normal running around unless they’re brought inside. Bring them inside.
Stay inside, yourself. Many people who don’t have home air conditioning can find comfort in shopping malls and movie theaters and even fast-food restaurants and office buildings.
Do not, under any circumstances, leave a child or a pet in a parked car.
Get yourself a hat with a wide brim, and wear it when you go outside. It will keep you cool, and your neck and shoulders, and if you’ve spent any time in dermatologists’ offices, you know how many people have skin cancers on their heads, noses, ears and shoulders.
Leave the grill alone during the heat spell.
Keep your pet’s water dish full at all times, and bring the pets inside by all means. They can be as sensitive to the heat as you are.
Do some little, cooling household things: close the drapes, use cold water in the washer, use the microwave instead of the conventional oven. (Note to single, male millennials: The conventional oven is the big thing near the sink.)
If you begin to “feel funny,” these are indications of heat illness: headaches, excessive sweating, no sweating, dizziness, cramps, fever, a faster-than-normal pulse. Don’t hesitate to go to an urgent care facility or an emergency room if you believe you’re getting in trouble; many people will.
Repeat the mantras that help you: This too shall pass. Or our favorite, 155 days until Christmas.