Stay happy and healthy during Swindon's mini heat wave

Posted: July 19, 2016

Helping you keep your cool this summer

On the hottest day of the year, Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is reminding local people of the easy steps to take to stay healthy when the mercury rises.
 
Swindon and the surrounding areas have seen temperatures hit 30 degrees in the last 24 hours and the hot weather looks likely to continue for the rest of the week.
 
Warm weather in England is often short lived but even brief exposure to the sun without protection can have lasting damage.

Lasting damage  

Tina Phillips, Skin Cancer Clinical Nurse Specialist, said: "Getting a painful sunburn just once every two years can triple a person's risk of skin cancer.  

"Even if you're in direct sunlight for a short period of time, it's important to make sure your skin is protected with a sun cream that's at least SPF 30 and offers UVA and UVB protection.
 
"When the sun is incredibly strong, like it has been today, it's always best to stay indoors during the middle of the day, where it's often cooler."
 
While the sun safety warnings are not new, data released from NHS England shows that the number of deaths from skin cancer in the south west increased by 15 per cent between 2009 and 2014.
 
Malignant melanoma cases in Wiltshire have also seen a rise in recent years, with the number of new diagnoses in the county now above the national average.
 
The national Cover Up Mate campaign, which encourages males working outside for long periods to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves against the sun, launched this week.

A good night's sleep  

Elsewhere, Specialist Sleep Nurse Samantha Backway has shared helpful tips for getting the best possible night's sleep.
 
She said: "The heat can make even the fittest person feel tired quicker than usual, so getting a good night's sleep is really beneficial at this time of year.
 
"Windows should be closed and curtains drawn during the day, then reopened in the evening when it's cooler.

"It's not always possible, but if you can, try to sleep downstairs where it will be cooler and have a bath or shower with tepid water to reduce your body's core temperature before getting into bed.
 
"Putting a pillow or sheet in the fridge can help keep your bed cool, but the easiest way to keep the whole room feeling fresh is to switch off all electrical devices when you go to sleep as they all generate heat."
 
Temperatures in Swindon are set to peak on Tuesday before staying in the mid-twenties for the remainder of the week.
 
More information on staying cool this summer can be found on the NHS Choices website, www.nhs.uk.

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