Selma: stay cool, keep hydrated

Published 7:28 pm Thursday, June 13, 2013

It’s about to get muggy and hot. And no not the kind of hot that those out west complain of — this is the kind of hot where you inhale and your lungs feel as heavy and hot as your stomach does following several barbecue plates at Hancock’s or Lannie’s. Temperatures will swelter this coming week in the 90s, while dew points will put a blanket of humidity in the area lingering in the 70s.

Actually, it might feel more like casually spending time in the one of the barbecue pits at Lannie’s and Hancock’s.

And while many will joke as we just did about the high temperatures and sweaty clothing they will sport next week, the precautions that need to be taken are a very serious matter.

Email newsletter signup

Residents should all stay hydrated, stay indoors and check on their elderly friends and loved ones. It is very early in the summer — not many people have had the chance to adjust their bodies to escalating temperatures.

If you are working in the yard, drink lots of water before, during and afterwards. If you are planning on spending Father’s Day on the Alabama River, please do the same. Avoid beverages containing alcohol and caffeine.

Make sure you know the signs and symptoms for heat strokes and go inside if feeling light headed or dizzy. Go into an air-conditioned area or take a cool shower immediately to lower your body temperature.

Remember to protect yourself from the sun with a brimmed hat. Wear light colored clothing to reflect the sun away from you — dark colored clothing absorbs all of the sun’s rays, making it much hotter. Avoid wearing cotton T-shirts that trap in the heat, but wear loose-fitting clothing of material like spandex or nylon that evaporates and wicks away sweat.

Finally, don’t forget animals outside in the backyard unless they have some sort of access to a watering hole or swimming pool. Too many animals are left chained to trees only to dehydrate and over heat in the summer months.