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Beating the Heat: Staying Cool During Power Outages
General Wellness

Beating the Heat: Staying Cool During Power Outages

By Your Health Staff
Posted: June 26, 2023

Power outages can be inconvenient, especially during the hot summer months in Memphis. Scorching temperatures can make staying cool and comfortable without air conditioning challenging. However, with a few simple tips and precautions, you can keep yourself and your loved ones cool and safe during power outages. 

Tips to Beat the Heat During Power Outages

Dress Light, Stay Cool

When the air conditioning is unavailable, your clothes can significantly impact your comfort level. Opt for loose-fitting garments in light colors that allow good airflow. Natural fabrics like cotton and linen are breathable and ideal for keeping cool. Avoid synthetic materials that can trap heat and make you feel even hotter.

Stay Hydrated, Stay Healthy

Proper hydration is crucial, especially when facing high temperatures. Drink plenty of water to replenish your body's fluids. Avoid sugary drinks as they can contribute to dehydration. Additionally, limit your intake of caffeine and alcohol, as they can have a diuretic effect and worsen dehydration.

Retain Cool Air 

To maximize the coolness in your home during a power outage, focus on retaining the existing cool air. Close off the hottest rooms to prevent heat transfer throughout the house. The more you open doors, the faster the cool air will escape. Keep curtains and blinds closed to block sunlight and prevent additional heat from entering your living space.

Embrace Natural Cooling Methods

Utilize simple and effective natural cooling methods to beat the heat. Dampen a towel or sheet, wring it out, and hang it against an open window. The breeze passing through the wet fabric will create a cooling effect. Take advantage of cooler temperatures during early mornings and evenings by opening doors and windows to rotate in fresh, cool air.

Preserve Food and Conserve Energy

During a power outage, minimizing food spoilage and conserving energy is crucial. Keep your refrigerator closed as much as possible to preserve perishable items. A closed fridge can maintain a cool temperature for several hours. This will help prevent food from spoiling and reduce the need to discard it.

Check on Your Elderly Family Members

Some older adults may not feel the heat, making them even more vulnerable during extreme temperatures. Let’s check in on one another and seek immediate attention if you notice any signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.


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Tips for People with Medical Devices 

If you rely on medical devices, here are some additional tips to ensure your safety during power outages:

1. Plan Ahead

Keep backup supplies for your medical devices, including batteries. Be prepared for unexpected power outages.

2. Contact Your Utility Providers

Reach out to your power and water company in advance to understand their advice and recommendations during power outages. They can provide specific guidance based on your needs.

3. Preserve Medication

If you store medications like insulin in the refrigerator, keep the door closed to maintain a cool temperature. Consider using an ice chest or cooler for longer periods without power.

4. Maintain an Updated List

Always keep a list of your medications and emergency contact numbers accessible in case of emergencies.

5. Refrain from Reusing Single-Use Devices

It's crucial not to reuse medical devices intended for single use. Plan ahead and ensure you have an extra supply of devices on hand.

6. Seek Immediate Help When Necessary

If you experience a medical emergency, don't hesitate to call 9-1-1. Emergency rooms across the city are prepared to assist in such situations.

Seek Assistance

As you prepare to face potential power outages during the summer months, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare is here to support you in staying safe and healthy. Remember, if you have any concerns about your well-being or need medical assistance, don't hesitate to contact your primary care physician at Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare. Our dedicated team of healthcare professionals is ready to provide you with the care and guidance you need. Stay cool, stay prepared, and stay connected with Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare.

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