Keeping Cool in the Hot Springtime

By: Jennifer Rogers
By: Jennifer Rogers

t seems to be getting hotter out here in the backyard of KOLO-TV News Channel 8.

Today we searched for places to go to keep cool and we didn't have much luck as many public pools and waterparks are still closed.

But don't forget there is always the good old stand-by methods . . . the slip and slide and - if that won't work - you can always cool off in a kiddie pool.

As the sun beats down on Northern Nevada people are scurrying to find anything to keep them cool.

"We came out to play in the fountains but they are not working, " said Deborah Kite.

Victorian Square fountain in downtown Sparks is closed. Sparks city officials tell us they are waiting for a special part that's coming from back east - hopefully by this weekend.

But many children didn't believe that the fountain was inoperable. Minutes later, a crew decided to check out other options.

But even Wild Island water park was closed. It will be open this weekend and from June 6th on.

So the mission to cool off continued.

The Sparks Marina seemed like the last option. The kids splashed around for a few minutes until a park ranger came by to announce: "No swimming, no wading on this beach. We do not have lifeguards - get out of the water."

Park Rangers say the Sparks Marina is also closed due to lack of lifeguards. No one will be allowed in the water until June 6th when the area is fully staffed.

So what can people do to keep cool?

"Beer is always a good thing," says Reno resident Sue Gothberg.

But if you not 21 - and tempetures continue to soar. . . you can always go with another old standby we heard about today . . .

"Stay in the shade, sunscreen, wear hats it's hot!"

No matter what you decided to do, drink plenty of water and remember alcohol and caffine actually dehydrate you. Also don't forget the sunscreen.

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Tips on Preventing and Managing Heat

  • Drink more fluids (nonalcoholic), regardless of your activity level. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Warning: If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on water pills, ask him how much you should drink while the weather is hot.

  • Don’t drink liquids that contain caffeine, alcohol, or large amounts of sugar–these actually cause you to lose more body fluid. Also, avoid very cold drinks, because they can cause stomach cramps.

  • Stay indoors and, if at all possible, stay in an air-conditioned place. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to the shopping mall or public library–even a few hours spent in air conditioning can help your body stay cooler when you go back into the heat. Call your local health department to see if there are any heat-relief shelters in your area.

  • Electric fans may provide comfort, but when the temperature is in the high 90s, fans will not prevent heat-related illness. Taking a cool shower or bath, or moving to an air-conditioned place is a much better way to cool off.

  • Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.

  • Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle.

  • Although any one at any time can suffer from heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk than others. Check regularly on:
    • Infants and young children
    • People aged 65 or older
    • People who have a mental illness
    • Those who are physically ill, especially with heart disease or high blood pressure

  • Visit adults at risk at least twice a day and closely watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Infants and young children, of course, need much more frequent watching.

If You Must be Out in the Heat

  • Limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours.

  • Cut down on exercise. If you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, nonalcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat. Warning: If you are on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage. Remember the warning in the first “tip” (above), too.

  • Try to rest often in shady areas.

  • Protect yourself from the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat (also keeps you cooler) and sunglasses and by putting on sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (the most effective products say “broad spectrum” or “UVA/UVB protection” on their labels).

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


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