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Having trouble beating the heat? Cooling assistance available for qualifying households

Published: July 9, 2014 3:32 PM

The Home Energy Assistance Summer Crisis Program started July 1. Ohioans at or below 175 percent of the federal poverty level who have a member of the household age 60 or older, or can provide physician documentation that cooling assistance is needed for a household member’s health, can receive assistance. The program helps eligible households purchase an air conditioner or fan, or assists in the payment of an electric bill. 

For more information, call 614-644-8774.

Here are some additional hints for beating the heat this summer from the Ohio Development Services Agency:

• Drink cool fluids especially when the temperatures heat up. Drinking water is best.

• Do not take salt tablets without a health care provider’s advice.

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• Avoid beverages that contain alcohol or caffeine, because they can add to dehydration and increase the effects of heat illnesses.

• Monitor or limit outdoor activities for young who may become preoccupied with outdoor play and not realize they are overheated. Adults should mandate frequent breaks and bring children indoors to cool down and have cool drinks.

• Children or adolescents involved in team sports should be closely monitored for signs of heat stress. Consider modifying practice or games during the hottest parts of the day.

• Symptoms of heat exhaustion include: heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea or fainting. People experiencing those symptoms should be moved to a shady or air-conditioned area. Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet clothes or towels. Have the person sip on a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes. If the someone refuses water, vomits or loses consciousness, call 911.

• Heat stroke is a life-threatening situation. Call 911 immediately. Symptoms include: a body temperature of 103 degrees or higher, red, hot and dry skin with no sweating, rapid pulse, headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, unconsciousness, and gray skin color. Before medical help arrives, begin cooling the person by any means possible, such as spraying person with water from a garden hose or by placing the person in a cool tub of water.

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