Recently, and over the next few days, local daytime temperatures are predicted to reach 30C, but can feel like 40 degrees C. For Toronto and other areas experiencing such high temperatures, these conditions increase the risk of heat illness like heat exhaustion and heat stroke, especially among the very young, the ill, or the very old. Anyone playing sports or being active outside over the next few days, anyone with pre-existing health conditions and those taking medication, or those without access to air conditioning need to be extra careful. If you or your loved ones have a health condition or are taking medication, ask your pharmacist or doctor if this increases any health risks in the heat.
Here is how you can protect yourself and others in a heat wave:
- Drink plenty of cool liquids, especially water before you begin to feel thirsty to decrease your risk of dehydration
- Reschedule or plan outdoor activities during cooler parts of the day (morning before 10 am or evening after 5 pm)
- Wear loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing made of breathable fabric
- Take a break from the mid-day heat by spending a few hours indoors
- Wear a hat and stay in the shade out of direct sunlight as much as possible
- Take a cool shower or bath
- Never leave people or pets inside a parked vehicle EVEN WITH windows open or partly open
- Check in with neighbours, friends and older family members to make sure they are cool and hydrated
For more information about Heat Health and precautions to take during heat waves, visit the Health Canada website.