This week has been another scorcher, with searing sunlight and temperatures in the triple digits. It’s the kind of weather that can get you in trouble before you know it.
Even the nights haven’t offered much relief, often barely falling below 80 degrees.
This uncomfortable weather pattern has lingered over the Midwest for the past several weeks. Yet, just because that kind of heat and humidity has become the norm, it hasn’t lost any of its dangerous potential.
These conditions have the capacity to kill. And as long as the extraordinary weather hangs around, we must keep that potential in mind – guarding ourselves and those around us from falling victim to heatstroke.
Health experts tell us that older adults often are the most vulnerable to the heat. The aging process, or certain medications that they may be taking, make them less able to cope with high temperatures and humidity. In conditions like these, we must make sure they have access to air conditioning.
Even much younger people aren’t exempt from the dangers, however. Those whose jobs require them to be outside during the heat of the day also are at risk. And athletes who try to continue their exercise routine despite the heat also can be affected if they’re not careful.
Exposure to extreme heat also impacts our pets, farm animals and other wildlife. Similarly, plants are struggling – whether it be corn plants wilting in the fields, trees dropping their leaves or garden plants succumbing to the unrelenting temperatures.
Make sure to check on your neighbors and your pets. Keep yourself and your family members cool and well hydrated.
The summer of 2012 will be one for the record books. Make sure you’re taking precautions so you’ll be around to tell your grandchildren about it.