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Friday, April 1, 2011

Summer Health Tips

* Drink plenty of water; your body needs it to prevent dehydration during warm summer days. Take bottles of water with you, if you're going out for any length of time. Remember, infants and toddlers can become dehydrated much more easily than adults, so be sure they get lots of liquids.

* If you have asthma or other respiratory problems, watch the air quality report for the day. Limit your time outdoors on days that have moderate to poor air quality outlooks. Plus, don't forget to take your inhaler or other medication when you go out.

* Wear appropriate shoes for your outdoor activities. If you're doing a lot of walking or other sports activities, skip those stylish summer sandals. Avoid blisters and sprains by choosing a good pair of walking shoes. Wear them with comfortable, cotton socks.

* Take a rest. Don't push beyond your physical limits. At intervals, sit in a shady spot.

* Take cover. Sunburn is painful and unhealthy. Use a good sunscreen, and re-apply it frequently during the day. Also, wear a hat to keep cool and shaded.

* Wear light, loose-fitting clothing to help you stay cooler.

* Don't forget sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sun's UV rays.

* Maintain your energy level by limiting your intake of fat and sugar; focus on carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables.

* Consume alcohol in moderation, and don't drink at all near the time that you may be driving.

* If you are traveling by air, put prescription drugs in your carry-on bag, not your checked luggage. Travelers and their baggage are sometimes parted, and it may be dangerous to skip even one dose.

* It is particularly important to bring medicines with you if you are traveling abroad. Drug names, doses, and availability differ in different countries, and in some parts of the world, drug safety and effectiveness may not be up to U.S. standards.

* Check the labels on your medicines for the possibility that they might increase your sensitivity to sun and/or heat.

* Don't store medicines in the trunk or glove compartment of your car or take them to the beach unless you will need them there. High heat and humidity can alter the potency of many drugs.

* If you are traveling with small children, make sure that all drugs are in containers with child-resistant caps. It may be difficult to keep medicine out of reach or under lock and key the way you would at home.

Tips Source: 1997-2003 American Council on Science and Health and 1997-2005, BJC HealthCare
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