Londoners urged to look after their health in hot weather
Temperatures are expected to rise to over 30C today and tomorrow – triggering an amber alert by the UK Health Security Agency – and Londoners are being encouraged to take care of their health and to check in on vulnerable neighbours, friends and family.
The NHS is encouraging people to stay out of the sun where possible as well as keeping their homes cool, checking on neighbours, family and friends and being aware of the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Medical director for the NHS in London Dr Chris Streather said: “The hot weather can have a significant impact on people’s health, especially those with existing health conditions and this can mean added pressure on already-overstretched health services.
“It is important to keep in the shade and keep cool and hydrated. If you or a family member feel unwell due to the heat, you should go to NHS 111 online first, call 111 or go to your local pharmacy for advice – you should only call 999 in an emergency.
“Symptoms of heat exhaustion include tiredness, dizziness, headaches, feeling sick or excessive sweating, as well as limb cramps and a high temperature.”
Heat exhaustion is not usually serious if you can cool down within 30 minutes. If it turns into heatstroke, it needs to be treated as an emergency.
Heatstroke can be very serious if not treated quickly. If you or someone else has signs of heatstroke, call 999 and put the person in the recovery position if they lose consciousness while you’re waiting for help.
Further information on heatstroke and heat-related illness can be found at www.nhs.uk/conditions/heat-exhaustion-heatstroke/
Notes to editors
- People are encouraged to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm, when UV radiation is strongest. If you have to go out, stick to the shade where you can and regularly apply sunscreen
- Keeping your living space cool is especially important, covering windows exposed to direct sunlight and keeping windows that are exposed to the sun closed during the day. If possible and safe, open windows at night if it feels cooler outside.
- Check on vulnerable neighbours, family or friends every day during the hot weather. Older people, young children and people with long term conditions are the most vulnerable and may need help keeping cool.
- On car journeys, ensure that babies, children, or older people are not left alone in parked cars, which can quickly overheat.