With the 2013 summer heatwave set to shine on for the foreseeable future, it's more important than ever to keep safe in the sun.
HuffPost UK Lifestyle are all for picnics and games of rounders in the park, but excess sun exposure can pose serious health risks.
According to a Public Health report, a 10-day heatwave in 2003 saw more than 2,000 excess deaths in England.
They warn that the temperatures reached in 2003 are likely to be 'normal' by 2040. So it's important to get to grips with how to prepare for such hot weather.
The main risks posed by a heatwave are dehydration, overheating, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Young people and the elderly are particularly at risk.
Here are some top tips to coping with the heatwave, from wearing sun cream and keeping hydrated to getting a good night's sleep.
General advice from the Met office
- Try and avoid the hottest part of the day (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and seek shade where possible. Avoid being in the sun for long stretches
- Drink plenty of fluids, but not alcohol, which dehydrates the body
- Try to eat as you normally would. Not eating properly may exacerbate health-related problems
- Avoid too much exercise, which can cause heat exhaustion or heat stroke, and can even be fatal
- If driving, keep your vehicle well ventilated to avoid drowsiness. Take plenty of water with you and have regular rest breaks
- If you have vulnerable neighbours who may be at risk during a heatwave, try to visit them daily
It's important to protect yourself against the sun's rays not only because of health risks, but also because of premature ageing. We've pulled together some handy sun tips below.
The National Sleep Foundation shared their expertise on how to get a good night's sleep, no matter how high temperatures soar.
- Prevent excessive heat build-up in your house during the day, by pulling down blinds and keeping windows closed
- Try taking a shower before bed, as water is a great cooling agent
- Wear light cotton PJs (or maybe none at all) to keep from getting overheated
- Have a fan in your bedroom to help keep you cool
- Remove your duvet from its cover, and sleep under just the sheet
And, of course, who knows better than mother nature? Take inspiration from these animals.
How do you cope with the sun? Let us know in the comments below.