12 Unusual Ways to Stay Cool During Heatwaves

Experts are predicting extremely high temperatures for the next 4 months. In fact, we’ve already witnessed 12 straight months of record-high temps across the globe. 

You’re likely well aware that extreme heat can be a major threat to our fragile power grid. And I think we’d all agree that it’s far from comfortable. But did you know that high temperatures can also be a serious health hazard? Especially for older folks. 

Seniors and the elderly are less able to regulate changes in body and environmental temperatures. Which puts them at higher risk for dehydration, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. Not to mention blood pressure changes, muscle cramps, and dizziness.

So with temperatures on the rise and none of us getting any younger, I wanted to give a few ways to keep cool beyond the basics. If you find yourself in a dangerous heat situation, maybe one of these unconventional tricks can help… 

1Cool your pulse points. Apply cold cloths or ice packs to your pulse points. Such as your wrists, neck, and temples. As cold blood circulates, your body can cool quickly.

2 - Freeze your bedding. Put your pillowcases and bed sheets in a plastic bag. Place the bag in your freezer for several minutes before you hit the hay. This can help you fall asleep faster and more comfortably on hot nights.

3 - Frozen rice socks. Fill a sock with rice, tie it off, and freeze it. Because rice retains cold for a long time, it makes for an effective and flexible ice pack. Apply it to your ankles, wrists, and neck.

4 - Add plants to your home. Transpiration in plants releases moisture into the air. This cools the air naturally. The peace lily and snake plant are among those that can purify the air. Which makes it feel cooler and fresher.

5 - Minty freshness. Use products with menthol. Such as mint-infused lotion or body wash. Menthol triggers cold receptors in your skin. Which makes you feel cooler.

6 - DIY cooling gel. Mix a few drops of peppermint oil into aloe vera gel. Place it in the refrigerator. Apply the gel to your skin for a cooling effect. It will hydrate and sooth.

7 - Hydration stations. Place cooling herbs into your water. Such as mint or cucumber. These additions make your water more refreshing. And they enhance the cooling effect when you drink it.

8 - Install window films. They reflect solar energy, blocking UV rays from entering your home. They can keep your home cooler in the summer. Just remember to remove them when the weather cools in the fall to keep your furnace from working too hard.

9 - Wristbands, neck wraps & wet bandanas. Soak neck wraps and wristbands in cold water and wear them. Your neck and wrists have many blood vessels close to the surface. So, cooling these areas can help lower your overall body temperature. Soak a bandana or hat in cold water and wear it while outside. As the water evaporates, it will cool your head. And help reduce your overall body temperature.

10 - Treat yourself with cooling snacks. Be sure to stock up on your favorite cooling treats. Flavored ice treats, ice cream, and popsicles are ideal for a hot summer. You can also make your own frozen treats. Freeze a bag of your favorite fruit slices. Such as watermelon, pineapple, lemons, and grapes. Choose foods with high water content. Including coconut water and cucumbers.

11 - Eat smaller meals. When you eat large meals, your body’s metabolism has to work hard to digest them. This heats your body. To avoid feeling hot after eating a meal, break your summer food intake into smaller meals. Eat them more frequently throughout the day.

12 - Eat to sweat. Why do they eat spicy foods in hot climates? Because they make internal temperatures rise, which produces sweat that evaporates and cools their bodies. Incorporate spicy foods and hot tea into your summer diet.

It looks like this summer is going to be a very hot one in a vast majority of the country. You owe it to your body to stay as cool as possible.


  • Marcia Bryan - June 04, 2024

    Great tips. Hoping my solar ChillFreeze start working. I agree this heat is difficult to deal with. Some of your tips sound like great ideas if only I can remember them. My printer is not working and I am still dealing with a tornado from 5/10 and living out on my own with limited connection with son and community and have 2 dogs to care for Mother Nature is not be kind to this area of Florida. Thank you for the tips.

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