In Tasmania we are used to coping with cool weather, but are less experienced coping with extreme heat. As we head into summer and hot days become more frequent, it’s important to brush up on the simple ways to keep yourself, family and home safe when the weather gets hot.
Here are some simple things to do to reduce your risk of being affected by the heat:
- Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Avoid sugar-sweetened drinks, alcohol and caffeine.
- Check on others: Check regularly on relatives and friends at risk, such as the elderly and people with chronic medical conditions. Look for signs of heat-related illness.
- Clothing: Wear lightweight, comfortable clothing, especially light colours that reflect the heat.
- Minimise sun: Keep out of the sun as much as possible. If you must go outside, wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and use plenty of broad-spectrum sunscreen (minimum SPF30+).
- Prepare your house: If you have a fan or air-conditioner, make sure it is working (and set to cool). If you do not have a fan or air-conditioner, open doors and windows where safe to do so. Draw blinds and curtains to keep out the heat during the day.
- Pets: Make sure your pets are kept out of the sun and have plenty of cool water to drink. Avoid exercising your dog in the heat of the day.
- Seek medical advice: Heat-related illness can be life threatening. In an emergency, call 000 for help. For non-urgent medical assistance, call healthdirect Australia on 1800 022 222 or call your GP.
For more information about coping in extreme heat, please visit the Extreme Heat page on the Department of Health website.
Extreme heat resources: