With summer finally set to sizzle, the HSE has offered some practical advice to avoid problems when the temperature soars into the thirties.
Dr Deirdre Mulholland, Area Director of Public Health Area A, urged people to stay safe and protect themselves from the sun. “Although we all enjoy warm weather in Ireland, the hot temperatures increase the risk of dehydration, fainting, heat exhaustion and heat stroke, particularly for vulnerable groups such as the elderly and small children. It is important to stay hydrated throughout the day by drinking plenty of fluids and don’t wait until you’re thirsty. Symptoms of dehydration include thirstiness, a dry mouth, headache, lightheadedness or dizziness. If you suspect that you or someone else is severely dehydrated, please seek immediate medical attention.”
“Take precautions like avoiding direct sunlight between 11 am and 3 pm, seek shade if you are out in the heat during those times and try to keep physical exertion to the cooler part of the day.”
Dr Kenneth Beatty, Specialist in Public Health Medicine, HSE Area A said: “Blue skies and sunshine are a very welcome sight. However, it is important for people to enjoy the good weather safely. Children and babies have very sensitive skin which can burn easily. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in Ireland, yet it is largely preventable by protecting the skin from ultraviolet (UV) radiation. We need to take the necessary steps to make sure that we protect ourselves from harmful UV rays from the sun. Remember the HSE SunSmart 5 S’s:
- Slip on clothing: Cover skin as much as possible, and wear long sleeves, and collared t-shirts.
- Slop on broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen: Apply sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30+ for adults and 50+ for children, with high UVA protection and water resistance. Reapply sunscreen regularly.
- Slap on a wide-brimmed hat.
- Seek shade: Especially if outdoors between 11 am to 3 pm.
- Slide on sunglasses.
“Covering the skin by wearing light and loose clothing, is recommended during hot weather to protect your skin from the sun,” Dr Beatty added.
For more information on keeping safe in the sun, visit: