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Natural Awakenings Naples and Fort Myers

Dealing with Extreme Heat

Aug 31, 2023 06:15PM ● By Sue Mahany

The New York Times Climate Forward newsletter recently reported that around the globe, temperatures are soaring as the world enters a multiyear period of intense warming fueled by manmade climate change and a naturally occurring El Niño weather pattern, which is releasing a gusher of heat into the atmosphere.

Heat dome and heat index are words that Floridians will likely be hearing more often during summer months. Southwest Floridians have already become acquainted with both this summer. According to NASA’s Earth Observatory, heat domes occur when strong, high-pressure atmospheric conditions trap sweltering heat over large areas. The heat index is what the temperature feels like when relative humidity is combined with the air temperature.

Both are important considerations for our health and comfort, which is why there are frequent heat advisories, heat alerts and excessive heat warnings. Even Floridians living in a sub-tropical climate need heat safety instruction to limit outdoor activity, seek shade and wear a high sun protection factor (SPF) sunscreen between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Wear a wide-brimmed hat to shade the face, ears and back of the neck. Wear sunglasses and clothing with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF). Stay hydrated and cool off at a public place such as a library or cooling station. Individuals can take refuge at cooling stations during their normal hours of operation.

Staying hydrated requires two things. Drink reverse osmosis water and add minerals with products such as ConcenTrace mineral drops. They are inexpensive and can be purchased locally or online. The body loses essential minerals, also known as electrolytes, when sweating. Electrolytes are necessary to rehydrate because they are vital to many key functions in the body. To determine the amount of water in ounces an individual should drink on a normal day, divide the body weight by two. When perspiring, drink more. Consuming sports drinks to rehydrate is not the best idea, because they may contain sugar or sweeteners such as sucralose and acesulfame potassium.

Sue Mahany is the owner of Spark Health Technologies. located at 11983 N. Tamiami Tl., Ste. #150, in Naples. For more information, call 802-752-6342 or visit