It’s hot enough in Nigeria as it is, but now a heatwave! Combine that with congestion, traffic and no light in Lagos and it gets majorly uncomfortable out there. Temperatures are at a record high and it can be dangerous to our health.
The heat is especially dangerous for the very young, older people or those with serious illnesses. In particular, it can make heart and respiratory problems worse. In extreme cases, excess heat can lead to heat stroke, which can be fatal.
Here are some tips to getting through these extreme conditions:
Slow down and avoid strenuous activity. If you must do strenuous activity, do it during the coolest part of the day, which is usually in the morning between 4am and 7am.
Stay indoors as much as possible. If air conditioning is not available, stay on the lowest floor, out of the sunshine. Try to go to a public building with air conditioning each day for several hours. Remember, electric fans do not cool the air, but they help sweat evaporate, which cools your body.
Wear lightweight, light-coloured clothing. Light colours reflect away some of the sun’s energy.
Drink plenty of water/fluids. Your body needs water to keep cool. Water is the safest liquid to drink during heat emergencies. Avoid drinks with alcohol of caffeine in them. They can make you feel good briefly, but make the heat’s effects on your body worse.
Eat small meals and eat more often. Avoid foods that are high in protein, which increase metabolic heat.
Be careful out there.