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Beat the Heat

Beat the Heat this Summer and Stay Safe and Cool

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Being in the midst of an unexpected heatwave might seem like a blessing during winter storms and snow!  But, any extreme or unexpected weather affects us in different ways and it is really important to take steps to minimise the impact on the elderly, the young, the vulnerable and anyone who is sensitive to weather extremes.

Since BTU always tries to help with cold weather in the winter we thought it was equally important to help our customers and friends understand how to keep cool and be prepared for the high temperatures we are experiencing at the moment.


Skin care and exposure to the sun

Recent advice has been stay out of the sun during the hottest periods of the day (usually between 11am and 3pm).  This is especially important if you are in a vulnerable group. But, if you like being in the sun,  be careful. Make sure you cover up, wear a hat and sunglasses, but also ensure you regularly apply sun cream (factor 30+) regularly. Children and the more vulnerable should wear total sun black (factor 50) and remain in the shade.


Diet and hydration

  • Make sure you are eating a balanced diet so your body can replace any salt or minerals you are losing by sweating. Also, it’s important to drink water or liquid each day - aim for 6 – 8 glasses of liquid a day, and more if it’s hot.
  • If you are taking certain types of medication especially those that affect water retention you need to take extra care.  Make sure you speak to your GP or a Pharmacist if you are worried or concerned in anyway.
  • Take care if you experience muscle cramps in your arms, legs or stomach.  If you suffer sleeplessness, weakness or mild confusion rest in a cool place and drink plenty of fluids.  See your GP if the symptoms persist.

Heat exhaustion

The symptoms of heat exhaustion include headaches, dizziness, nausea or vomiting, intense thirst, heavy sweating and a fast pulse. If you have any of these symptoms you must, if at all possible:

  • find a cool place and loosen tight clothes
  • drink plenty of water or fruit juice
  • sponge yourself with cool water or have a cool shower
  • Your symptoms should improve within 30 minutes. If you're feeling better but still have any concerns, call your GP or NHS 111 for advice.


Heatstroke can develop if heat exhaustion is left untreated – it can also develop suddenly and without warning. The symptoms of heatstroke include confusion, disorientation, seizures and loss of consciousness.

Heatstroke is a life-threatening condition. If you or someone else shows symptoms:

  • call 999 immediately
  • if you have a community alarm, press the button on your pendant to call for help
  • while waiting for the ambulance, follow the advice given for heat exhaustion but do not try to give fluids to anyone who is unconscious.

Keeping cool in the office or the home

Where it’s possible put the air-conditioning on – especially at work – and drink plenty of liquids. If you don’t have the luxury of air-con and you feel the heat, use a fan both day and night. Try and– have a door or window open at the front and back of where you live or work, this will create a breeze. If you are lucky enough to have air-con, make sure it has been serviced and is working properly – otherwise you are wasting energy and not getting any benefit – you may also be causing damage to the air-con unit which will be expensive to fix or replace!


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