Summer in our region presents some challenges. The high temperatures and humidity can adversely affect anyone, but particularly the elderly, kids and even pets. Overheating can necessitate emergency medical procedures and hospitalization.
Read on for some common sense tips to survive the worst of summer in the Gulf Coastal region.
You may think that dogs, cats or other pets are just naturally tough enough to survive the outdoor elements. Be aware. Most pets are not like wild animals, which evolve to survive temperature extremes in areas in which they originate. Many pets become quickly overwhelmed by their inability to cool themselves. Watch for signs of heat exhaustion such as excessive panting, difficulty breathing, rapid heart or respiratory rate, drooling and weakness. More advanced symptoms are seizures, vomiting, bloody diarrhea and body temperature over 104 degrees F.
Keep pets indoors during periods of high heat with the air conditioner on. Try to limit outdoor playtime to early mornings or late afternoons or evening. If you must leave them outdoors, make sure they have shade, plenty of water, and even a fan. Avoid carrying pets in the car in summer unless you can leave the air conditioner on.
Most kids love being outdoors during the summer but be sure to monitor their activities carefully when the temperature heats up. Here are some tips to help kids safe:
- Encourage outdoor play or participation in sporting events in the morning or late afternoon.
- Limit strenuous activities when humidity is high, which is most of the time in our coastal climate.
- Be sure kids stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Avoid sodas and caffeinated drinks, which are dehydrating.
- Keep buckets with ice towels on hand during times of strenuous activity.
- Watch for signs of heat exhaustion, including dizziness, nausea, cramping, confusion, and headache.
- Keep your A/C serviced, changing the filter regularly so that it can do a better job dehumidifying your home. A drier home will feel more comfortable in the hot months.
For more tips for surviving summer, contact Bradbury Brothers Heating & Air Conditioning of The Woodlands.