10 tips for staying safe in the heat

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Applying sunscreen is one tip for staying safe in the heat. (AP photo)

It's only May, but it's about to feel like July or August. Forecasters say the hottest stretch of the year thus far is coming this week, with three more days of 90-plus temperatures expected.

With that in mind, here are 10 tips for staying cool and preventing heat-related illness or injury, courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Philadelphia Health Department:

1. Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible, especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

2. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing.

3. Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid alcohol, caffeine and beverages with high amounts of sugar.

4. Take cool showers or baths.

5. Wear a hat or use an umbrella for shade.

6. Know the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Warning signs include: decreased energy, loss of appetite, nausea, lightheadness and heavy sweating. Serious signs that indicate an emergency include: rapid heartbeat, throbbing headache, dry skin, muscle cramps, confusion, trouble breathing and vomiting.

7. Wear sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.

8. Never leave a child, elderly person or pet alone in a car.

9. Replace the salt and minerals you lose from sweat, such as by consuming a sports drink.

10. If you are not used to exercising or spending time outside in hot weather, pace yourself. Gradually increase the amount of time you spend outdoors and the intensity of your activities.

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