By Bethany Bessire

Staff writer

You can not beat the heat if you are planning to spend any time outdoors this summer, but you can be safe in it. Heat exhaustion, heat stroke and dehydration are very real possibilities for people who do not take the sun seriously. With temperatures climbing into the 100s, people have to be aware how to protect themselves from the heat.

According to the American Red Cross the best times to be outside are before 11 a.m. and after 4 p.m. when the temperatures are cooler. If people can not avoid going outdoors during peak hours they should follow these guidelines:

4 Dress for the heat.

4 Drink water.

4 Eat small meals.

4 Slow down.

4 Take regular breaks.

Geneva Howard, executive director of Pontotoc County American Red Cross, said sunscreen, hydration and sunglasses are key to staying safe in the sun. People tend to forget about the importance of sunglasses, “Sunglasses are more than just cute, they are for a reason,” said Howard. UV rays are harmful to the eyes as well as the skin and keeping both protected is important during sun exposure.

The summer heat can be overwhelming, but taking the proper precautions can prevent serious injury from occurring. For more tips and guidelines on summer safety, visit American Red Cross web site at

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