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7 Common Summer Ailments And Ways To Prevent Them

Summer ailments are quite common during the hot summer months. From heat rashes and sunburns to jaundice and food poisoning summer causes a host of health problems.

In India, usually May and June are considered the hottest months of the year with temperatures rising above 40 degree Celsius. And with a rise in temperature the summer ailments also tend to increase, which is why we should take necessary preventive measures to lower the risk of summer ailments.

Here, we've listed down some common summer ailments that you must protect yourself against.

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1. Sunburns

Sunburn is characterised by red, painful skin that feels hot when touched. It occurs when the skin is exposed to ultraviolet rays (UV) emitted from the sun or from artificial sources such as tanning beds. Sunburns usually appear within a few hours after exposure and repeated sun exposure can elevate the risk of skin damage and certain diseases, which includes skin cancer, dry or wrinkled skin, dark spots and rough spots [1].

Prevention method: Apply a sunscreen with SPF 40 before going out in the sun.

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2. Heat stroke

Heat stroke also known as sun stroke is the most common condition in the summer months. It is caused due to the body's prolonged exposure to or physical exertion in high temperatures, resulting in overheating of the body [2].

Preventive methods: Refrain from stepping out during the day from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. as this is the time when the sun's rays are too strong. And if you have to step out, cover yourself properly and apply sunscreen before stepping out.

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3. Food poisoning

Food poisoning also called food-borne illness is an illness that occurs when you consume contaminated food or water. Infectious pathogens like bacteria [3], virus and parasites are the most common causes of food poisoning.

Preventive methods: Avoid eating foods and uncooked meat sold in the open by roadside vendors.

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4. Headache

Headache is another common ailment that happens in the summer months when there is a rise in temperature. The hot weather causes the blood vessels in your head to expand causing throbbing pain, resulting in a headache. Headache may also occur due to dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Preventive method: Cover yourself properly before stepping out and drink plenty of water throughout the day.

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5. Heat rash

Heat rash also known as prickly heat and summer rash is a common ailment in the summer months. Long exposure in the sun can trigger an itchy, red rash on the skin.

Preventive methods: Avoid going out in hot, humid weather and avoid doing strenuous exercises to prevent excessive sweating.

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6. Jaundice

The high temperatures in the summer months increase the risk of jaundice. Jaundice is characterised by a yellowish tinge on the skin and in the whites of the eye. The condition occurs when there is a build-up of bilirubin (waste material) in the blood.

Preventive methods: Keep your body hydrated and eat fresh fruits and vegetables.

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7. Typhoid

Typhoid is caused by the bacterium Salmonella Typhi and it spreads through contaminated food or water. Drinking unhealthy beverages in hot summer, stagnant water and lowered ground water table level are considered some of the risk factors of typhoid during the summer season [4].

Preventive methods: Avoid consuming contaminated food or water.

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How To Prevent Summer Ailments

• Avoid going out when it is too hot or sunny.

• Avoid exposure to direct sunlight

• Keep your body hydrated

• Use sunscreen with a higher SPF

• Eat more fruits and vegetables

• Avoid roadside food or contaminated water

• Wear loose clothing during the summer season

• Maintain proper hygiene

Read more about: summer disease ailment health
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