May 23rd, 2023
4 mins

This guidance provides advice for everyone on how to stay safe during hot weather.

Anyone can become unwell if they get too hot. However, some people are at higher risk of becoming seriously unwell.

This guidance can help to prepare people for hot weather and sets out actions to take in order to keep cool and keep homes cool.

The document sets out actions to take to stay safe in hot weather; this includes:

  • Keeping out of the sun at the hottest time of the day, between 11am and 3pm.
  • Planning certain activities during times of the day when it is cooler such as the morning or evening (such as exercise).
  • Keeping homes cool by closing windows and curtains in rooms that face the sun.
  • If outside, cover up with suitable clothing such as an appropriate hat and sunglasses, seek shade and apply sunscreen.
  • Drinking plenty of fluids and limit alcohol intake.
  • Checking on family, friends and neighbours who may be at higher risk of becoming unwell, and if you are at higher risk, ask them to do the same for you.
  • Knowing the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke and what to do if you or someone else has them.

If you or someone else has symptoms of heat exhaustion:

  • Move to a cooler place such as a room with air conditioning or somewhere in the shade.
  • Remove all unnecessary clothing like a jacket or socks.
  • Drink cool water, a sports or rehydration drink, or eat cold and water rich foods like ice-lollies.
  • Apply cool water by spray or sponge to exposed skin, and using cold packs wrapped in a cloth and put under the armpits or on the neck can also help.

You should start to cool down and feel better within 30 minutes.

The guidance also covers:

  • About hot weather and health.
  • People at higher risk of becoming unwell in hot weather (there is a change to previous guidance: older people aged 65 years and over has changed from 75 years and above).
  • Heat exhaustion and heatstroke.
  • Be prepared for hot weather.
  • Stay well when there is hot weather.
  • Stay safe when swimming.

UK Health and Security Agency
May 2023


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