I’m sure you’ve all noticed that it’s really really hot at the moment and this week is set to be an absolute belter of a heatwave, with temperatures set to soar into their 30s during the week. So it’s vital that we all know how to cool down effectively, if we want to avoid things like heatstroke and to just generally be a bit less uncomfortable.
We’re doing all we can in nursery to keep our little people and our staff as cool as possible but there are things that we can do to help ourselves and each other.
We all know that we should be wearing sunscreen, sun hats and drinking water but sometimes, that’s just not enough.
So, here are our top tips for staying as cool as a cucumber .
1. Listen to your body
If you start to feel at all unwell, with symptoms such as a headache, dizziness, excessive sweating or a fast pulse, you may be experiencing heat exhaustion.
If you believe you or someone else is suffering with heat exhaustion, move them to a cool place, get them to lie down and give them plenty of fluids to drink. If their condition doesn’t improve after 30 minutes call 111.
2. Check your house
When hot weather is forecast, make sure the property you’re living or working in is well equipped to keep you cool.
Try to use the coolest room in the building and avoid the warmer ones where possible.
Check your fridge, freezer and any fans you own are working properly and that your central heating can be turned off.
Try to leave any lights and electrical items such as Televisions, radios, vacuums etc switched off.
At night time, wear as little as possible or use a light cotton sheet instead of a duvet if you like to be covered.
3. Freeze your breeze
If you place a bowl, tray of ice or a frozen bottle of water in front of a blowing fan your room will become cooler as the ice melts.
Use air conditioning units, air coolers and fans if you have them.
4. Shut out the sun
Keep blinds and curtains closed during the day as a preventative measure to stop your room from overheating.
5. Get in the shade
It’s advisable to step into the shade between 11am and 3pm from March to October.
In the UK, this is the time of the day where the sun is strongest.
6. Eat small meals regularly and make wise menu choices
Your body warms up as it works to process larger meals.
Metabolic heat is needed to break down food, so eating smaller portions can help keep you cooler.
Change the menu so that meals do not need to be cooked or choose meals that require very little cooking.
7. Choose cotton
Opting for lightweight cotton clothing is the best option when its scorching outside and its best to try and keep your shoulders covered to prevent burning.
Avoid dark colours and keep summery with whites and creams, as these are more likely to reflect the sun’s radiation.
Allow children to wear as little as possible when out of the sun and indoors.
If you go outside, wear sunglasses and a hat and of course, make sure to apply a sunscreen with a high SPF and good UVA protection.
8. Keep hydrated
Sweating can cause dehydration, making you more susceptible to heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Drinking cool glasses of water throughout the day can be enough to bring your body temperature down.
If you have a reluctant drinker try using straws or different cups to encourage then to drink. Homemade ice lollies are also good for hydrating.
9. Get low
Hot air rises, so get down as low as you can to make sure you’re surrounded by cool air.
Sleep on the floor, or go downstairs, if you’re getting desperate to escape the heat.
Keep activities to ground level and stay downstairs where possible.
Lots of water activities inside and out (in the shade) and ice lollies for everyone.
Less physical play, eg running around etc and more calming activities in the shade.
10. Rinse your wrists
Washing either your wrists or your feet with cold water before bedtime can help you to cool down and drift off.
This can also be done throughout the day.
11. Keep your feet cool
There are plenty of pulse points around the feet and ankles, so dunking your feet into a bucket or bowl of cold or iced water can lower your temperature.
12. Breathe deep
Inhaling through the mouth and exhaling through the nose to create a refreshing effect.
In theory, when taking in breath this way, your saliva should help cool the air before it’s taken to your lungs.
13. Keep your moisturisers and lipsticks in the fridge
On a hot day, you get a bit of much-needed rejuvenation and a cooler feeling by applying a cold moisturiser to your body.
Keeping your products in the fridge will create this cooling effect without any hassle.
A small spray bottle of cold water to spritz your face will help to keep you cooler.
And theres nothing worse than a melted lipstick!
14. Get a hand-held fan
This helps to make you feel more comfortable with minimal effort.
It’s not advisable to use your hands to fan yourself, as this repetitive motion will just make your body temperature increase.
15 . Keep in touch
Make sure that you can contact your elderly relatives and neighbours during this hot spell. They may need help with meals and shopping as they may not want to go out in the heat.
How can you help?
Please send your child to nursery appropriately dressed for this weather. Vests, long sleeves and too many layers can make children overheat.
If your child is a reluctant drinker, please feel free to bring in a familiar cup as it’s important that we encourage them all to drink plenty.
Put suncream on your children before you leave the house. We do apply it in nursery but it’s important they’re covered as soon as they go outside.
Provide a wide brimmed hat for your child. We do have some hats in nursery though, if you forget.
Being hot is very tiring so your child may need to sleep more than usual during the day. They may also be tired if they haven’t slept well during the night due to being too hot.
Provide spare clothing for your child. We will be getting wet!
But most importantly, try and enjoy the sunshine. It never lasts for long!