Dr Rachel: Top Summer Health Concerns

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) - Summer is here and there are four common health issues you need to look out for. Summer means being out in the sun. So, naturally sunburn is a big concern. But sunburns can occur on a cloudy day. Clouds do not provide protection from the sun rays so don’t forget your sunscreen on those cloudy days.

Food-borne illnesses are two times more common in the summer than during other times of the year. Summer is full of picnics and heat is the culprit in food-borne illness during the summer.

Anything that has mayonnaise, dairy, or eggs in it and any meat products can grow nasty bacteria after only a couple of hours of being unrefrigerated. Don’t leave food out longer than 2 hours and no more than an hour if it is 90 degrees or hotter.

The symptom that is common to these illnesses is diarrhea. If diarrhea persists for three days or 24 hours in kids or if a fever develops, get to a doctor.

Bug bites from mosquitoes, bees, and ticks are painful, annoying and itchy. They can also be serious if the bug carries a disease such as West Nile or Lyme Disease. Did you know that bugs are attracted to bright colors and scents? So, wear lightly colored clothes and skip the scented products.

Hypothermiaoccurs when your body overheats. Overheating can lead to dehydration, heat stroke, and death. Kids may not ask for water when they are active outside so make sure they take frequent water breaks to prevent dehydration. Older adults are more susceptible to hypothermia because we lose our ability to dissipate heat as we age.

Early signs of heat stroke include cramps, heavy sweating, weakness, dizziness, and nausea. If you develop these symptoms, please seek medical attention.

Have a great, healthy, and safe summer.