With the long summer weekend ahead of you, you might be tempted to leave the house without taking the proper precautions. By proper precautions, we mean guarding yourself against the perils of being exposed under the scorching heat of the sun for long periods of time. And it’s not just about those darn UV rays we're talking about, because there’s a much worse evil than that, and it’s called heat stroke.

Heat stroke occurs after prolonged exposure to high temperatures. If you’re out under the sun and you suddenly feel tired, get a headache, cramps or rashes, and become extremely thirsty, it’s time to find a shaded spot and get hydrated because you might already be suffering from that deadly condition.

Heat strokes are capable of causing death. But these deaths are preventable, so it’s really important to take extra care and know what the signs and symptoms are. The Department of Health (DOH) recently released its heat stroke prevention guide, which covers the basics of heat-related illness. Follow these tips to prevent heat stroke at work and at home.

1) Don’t wait until you're thirsty to drink more water. Remember to keep your body consistently hydrated. Carry a bottle of water around especially during Visita Iglesia.

2) Wear lightweight clothing in light colors. White and other light colors absorb less heat than darker colors.

3) Wear hats, use umbrellas, and other shields from the sun.

4) Avoid the sun during the peak hours of 10 AM to 3 PM.

5) Take cool showers or baths to keep your body temperature down.

6) Avoid alcohol, tea, coffee, or drinks with high sugar content as they can be dehydrating.

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The DOH also gave tips against the six common summer diseases sore eyes or conjunctivitis, sunburn, colds, diarrhea, boils, and rabies.

For sore eyes, thorough handwashing and proper hygiene must be observed. Also, avoid using eye drops or similar medicine without proper consultation.

For sunburn, use a sunblock that has SPF of 30 or higher, 30 minutes prior going out or swimming.

Lastly, DOH recommends having flu vaccinations, while dog owners are encouraged to vaccinate their pets against rabies.

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This story originally appeared on Fhm.com.ph.

* Minor edits have been made by the Femalenetwork.com editors.

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