Health Tips

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SUN AND YOU

Article by Dr. Ahlam Ali, MBBS – General Practitioner Allied Medical Center, Dubai, UAE

Summer season is a great time to be out and about but adequate care must be taken to keep ourselves healthy and fit.

Here are a few common summer troubles:

Sunburn: Considering the UAE can get pretty hot during the summer, this is probably the most widespread problem. Outdoor activities can often lead to one getting sunburnt if proper care is not taken. Sunburn is caused by an overexposure to the ultraviolet radiation. If sunburn is taken lightly and is often repeated, it may lead to complicated diseases like skin cancer.

• Protect yourself by avoiding exposure of the skin to harsh sunlight.
• Avoid direct exposure especially between 12.00 PM and 03.00 PM
• Apply a proper sunblock with the desired SPF rating
• Stay under a shade whenever possible

Heat Stroke: If left untreated, if can be quite dangerous. Symptoms often include fever, rapid heartbeats, general confusion, tightness in the chest area and general discomfort. Heatstroke can be easily prevented by avoiding prolonged stay under the sun and by intake of adequate water.

Food poisoning: The warm weather makes food products spoil quickly. Care must be taken to have the leftovers refrigerated and any food that is being cooked must be cooked properly. Vegetables and fruits must be washed well and preserved.

• Do not eat food that has been keep out for long periods without refrigeration
• Do not drink from common plastic bottles or reuse them as these plastics are safe only for single use
• Do not drink from plastic bottles that have been in the sun for long

Diarrhea: A common enough occurrence in the summer, food or drinks can be contaminated as the excessive heat spoils the food and creates an ideal breeding ground for microbes. If diarrhea continues for more than 48 hours (in adults) or is accompanied by fever, seek medical help immediately.

Kidney Problems: This is a result of an inadequate intake of fluids or water. Water is essential for the proper functioning of the body. Common, health problems that result from a lack of water are Kidney stones and Urinary Tract Infection among others. It is advisable to drink at least 6 -8 glasses of water per day.

Summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, provided you take the appropriate measure to care for yourself and your family. Take care and stay safe.

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