Protect Yourself From the Dangers of Extreme Heat
The effects of rising temperatures and extreme heat result in numerous illnesses and deaths each year.
For many people, warm weather is a time for fun-filled outdoor activities. However, hot weather and outdoor activities don’t always mix well, especially during periods of extreme heat— times when temperatures are substantially hotter and/or more humid than average for a location and date.
Extreme heat can cause people to suffer from heat-related illness, and even death. People suffer heat-related illness when their bodies are unable to properly cool themselves. Older adults, young children, and people with chronic medical conditions are at high risk for heat-related illness and death. More than 700 people die from extreme heat every year in the United States.
Warmer temperatures can mean higher ozone levels. Pay attention to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Quality Indexexternal icon when planning outdoor summer activities, especially if you have asthma or another lung disease.
- Track extreme heat in your area. The CDC Heat & Health Tracker provides local heat and health information so communities can better prepare for and respond to extreme heat events. You can use it to explore how extreme heat affects your county, populations that are at risk, and resources for response.
NCEH/ATSDR Office of Communication
When temperatures are extremely high, take steps to protect yourself and your loved ones:
- Stay in an air-conditioned indoor location as much as you can.
- Drink plenty of fluids even if you don’t feel thirsty.
- Schedule outdoor activities carefully.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing and sunscreen.
- Pace yourself.
- Take cool showers or baths to cool down.
- Check on a friend or neighbor and have someone do the same for you.
- Never leave children or pets in cars.
- Check the local news for health and safety updates.
CDC urges everyone to learn about danger of extreme heat, know the potential risks to health, and discover ways stay healthy and safe. Learn more about the effects of extreme heat.