Simple Summer Health Tips
Summer in Coastal Virginia is the perfect time to get out on the water, explore the nearby beaches and trails and make the most of living in our exciting city. Whether you like walking, running, hiking, biking, swimming or just relaxing outdoors, summer in Hampton, VA is the season to do it.
Before you plan a summer filled with fun in the sun, it’s important to take preventative measures to ensure your comfort and safety as temperatures rise and you find yourself exploring the great outdoors. High heat, water play, seasonal bugs and the sun’s powerful rays can all be harmful if not managed carefully. You’ll want to spend these bright, sunny days feeling your best, and that’s why we’ve come up with a simple list of summer health tips to help you navigate the season with care.
Happy Summer, from all of us at Signature Place!
Watch for Extreme Heat
Our coastal climate means we get the best of the season’s cool breezes, but we also get its high heat and humidity. In summer months, it’s important to be mindful of extreme heat and to take proper precautions to ensure both your own health and the health of those you love (furry family, included). When the temperature rises, try to avoid spending too much time outdoors, and when you do, choose your time wisely. Aim to be outside in the early morning or evening, rather than midday or afternoon, when temperatures reach their peaks. Also, make sure to hydrate regularly and avoid drinking too much caffeine and alcohol, as these can be dehydrating. When you are outside, seek shade often, and if you have to be outside with pets, be mindful of keeping them cool, hydrated and safe, as well.
Living on the water is one of the many reasons we love living in Hampton, VA, but it comes with added responsibility. It’s important to know how to swim safely, so that you can enjoy the community pool and area beaches without fear of accidental injury or drowning. You should never swim alone or under the influence of alcohol. Always monitor children or those without swim experience, and never leave a child unattended near or in water. Sign up for swim lessons if you or your family members could use a skills brush up, and while you’re at it, consider taking a CPR review course. Finally, when swimming in pools, make sure to avoid going near drains, and advise children to do the same.
In summer months, the sun’s rays are at their most powerful and can cause damage to your skin and your overall health. Be sure to wear sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, anytime you leave the house to spend time outdoors. If you know you’ll be outdoors for long periods of time, make sure to also wear a hat, sunglasses and protective clothing. When swimming and sweating, you’ll want to make sure to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours, at a minimum. Make sure to hydrate repeatedly whenever you spend time in the heat, and keep cool, fresh water with you for pets, as well.
Beware of Bugs
The warm weather months bring out the bugs, and while most are harmless, there are a few you’ll need to watch out for. Ticks and mosquitoes can be widespread in our region, especially in areas that are damp or around standing water. You’ll want to do what you can to avoid both in summer, as best you can. Your best defense against ticks is to keep your skin covered when walking through high grass or forest areas. Spray yourself down with a good bug spray in advance as well, and when you get home, have a family member or friend check you from head to toe for ticks. When it comes to mosquitoes, make sure to spray yourself down with bug spray and avoid wearing perfumes or other scented products. Drinking 1 tbsp a day of Apple Cider Vinegar has been shown to keep mosquitoes away, as well. Make sure to dump out any pots or dishes that have standing water in them, and when in doubt, avoid damp, marshy areas in the hot, summer months, as best you can.
Fuel Your Fun
Since most people find themselves spending more time outdoors during summer and being more active, a healthy, balanced diet is essential. Make sure to include fresh fruits and vegetables into each meal of the day, and choose lean proteins and low fat dairy as healthy protein options. Foods that are higher in fiber will help your digestive system to keep functioning well, and will help you to metabolize your food better and have the energy you need to fuel a summer filled with fun!