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Summer in D.C.: surviving the heat

With temperatures reaching up to a hundred degrees between July and August, the best way to describe summer in the D.C. area is “hot and humid,” — a combination that can be dangerous to your health.

To keep yourself cool this summer, follow these simple tips.

    1. Stay indoors. The best way to avoid heat is to stay within the comforts of your own home. If you’re going out, try not to be overexposed to the sun and avoid activities such as gardening and sports. If you really must partake in a strenuous activity, do it in the early morning, when the temperature is cooler.

    2. Stay hydrated. To combat dehydration, drink plenty of water and stay away from carbonated drinks as well as liquids that contain alcohol or caffeine. Aside from dehydration, not drinking enough water can lead to exhaustion, head stroke, or cramps.

    3. Avoid wearing dark colors. It’s not just a fashion statement, but a conscious style choice. Dark colors trap heat, while light-colored clothing are considerably more breezy and will help you keep cool. Don’t forget to complete your look with a nice pair of sunglasses and even a hat.

    4. Wear sunscreen. Protect yourself from UV rays and wear a sunscreen with at least 30 SPF. If you’re going out swimming, remember to re-apply sunblock once in a while. If you want to be eco-friendly, choose sunscreen without the harmful chemicals said to contribute to coral bleaching. Not only are you keeping yourself safe, you’re lending the environment a helping hand as well.

    5. Don’t leave pets or young children in a car. Even if you’ll be back in a jiffy, it’s best not to leave your pets or kids in a car in broad daylight. If you have no choice, make sure the engine is running, the car on park, and the air condition working. Animals and kids trapped in hot cars can suffer from heatstroke or even death.

If you’ve got no air conditioning and you’ve no desire to go swimming, go to the nearest mall, library, or cafe, where you can find reprieve from the unbearable heat. Keep yourself and your loved ones safe to make this summer a memorable one.

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