Calgary might be better known for its chilly winters than sizzling summers, but when a heat wave hits, it’s no joke. The sudden shift from cool breezes to sweltering sunshine can catch even the most prepared of us off guard. So, what’s a Calgarian to do when the temperatures soar?
Fear not! Today, I’ve compiled a list of a few effective and easy-to-implement strategies to ensure us all to stay cool, hydrated, and comfortable during those unexpectedly hot August days in our city of Calgary.
Here are some suggestions to help you stay cool:
- Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol as they can dehydrate you.
- Windows and Blinds: Keep windows, blinds, or curtains closed during the hottest part of the day to prevent the sun’s rays from heating up your home.
- Fans and Air Conditioners: Use fans or air conditioners if you have them. Ceiling fans should rotate counterclockwise in the summer to push cool air down.
- Cooling Clothing: Consider wearing light-colored and lightweight clothing. Materials like cotton are breathable and can help to keep you cooler.
- Avoid Direct Sunlight: If you must be outside, try to stay in the shade or wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
- Limit Physical Activity: If you can, try to avoid strenuous activities during the hottest parts of the day, typically between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
- Cool Your Skin: Use a damp cloth or have a cool shower or bath. Consider filling a spray bottle with water and keeping it in the refrigerator for a quick refreshing spray to your face after being outdoors.
- Eat Light: Heavy meals can add to your body heat. Try salads, fruits, and other cool, light meals.
- Stay Informed: Check local news for temperature updates and health advisories. This will help you prepare and adjust your activities accordingly.
- Visit Cool Places: If your home doesn’t have air conditioning, consider visiting public places like shopping malls, libraries, or community centers that might.
- Stay Low: Remember that heat rises. If you live in a multi-level home or apartment, the lowest floor will usually be coolest.
- Use Cooling Products: There are numerous products designed to help cool you down, from cooling towels to personal fans.
- Drink Cool Liquids: This might sound obvious, but sipping on cold drinks (especially water) can help cool your body down.
- Optimize your Home: If this is a regular concern, consider investing in heat-reflecting window films or shades, planting trees to create more shade, or installing a more efficient air conditioning system.
- Nighttime Ventilation: If the nights are cooler, open your windows and use fans to circulate the cool air. But remember to close them once it starts to get warm again in the morning.
- Basement Refuge: If you have a basement, it can be a great refuge during the hottest times, as underground spaces tend to stay cooler.
Happy August to all of you and remember friends to be alert, vigilante and to always be on the lookout for signs of heat-related illnesses like heat exhaustion or heat stroke, which can be serious and require medical attention.
Stay safe and cool!