It’s important to protect yourself and others in periods of hot weather. Heat and prolonged exposure to the sun can pose health risks for some people, especially those with underlying health conditions.

Outdoors

If you are going outside or travelling, try to avoid the peak hours of the day where UV rays are strongest. This is usually between 11am and 3pm.

Apply sunscreen and keep to shady areas where possible. Drink lots of fluids and take water with you. Wear loose clothing, a hat, and UV-protective sunglasses.

Avoid extreme physical exertion. If you can’t avoid strenuous outdoor activity, such as sport, DIY or gardening, keep it for cooler parts of the day, for example, in the early morning or evening.

Indoors and enclosed spaces

Temperatures inside can be higher than temperatures outdoors, so it’s best to close curtains or blinds on rooms that face the sun to keep indoor spaces cooler.

Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle, especially infants, young children, vulnerable adults, or animals.

Vulnerable people

Keep an eye on those you know who may be at risk this summer. If you’re able, ask if your friends, family or neighbours need any support.

Pets

Make sure your pets are kept cool and hydrated.

Signs of heat-related harm

If you feel dizzy, weak or have intense thirst and a headache, move to a cool place as soon as possible. Drink some water or diluted fruit juice to rehydrate. Avoid excess alcohol.

If you have painful muscular spasms (particularly in the legs, arms, or abdomen), rest immediately in a cool place and drink electrolyte drinks.

Electrolyte drinks include:

  • cow's milk
  • smoothies and fruit juices
  • sports drinks

Most people should start to recover within 30 minutes and if not, you should seek medical help. Call 111 if you feel unusual symptoms, or if symptoms persist.

Call 999 if a person develops any signs of heatstroke as this is a medical emergency.

Further information

More advice and information on keeping safe in the summer sun can be found on the NHS webpages.

For the latest weather advice and forecast please visit the Met office website.