7 Tips to Keep Yourself Cool Without Air Conditioning in Hot Days
The summer of 2022 is extremely hot for many countries in the world.
In some countries where the temperature is suitable all year round, only a few people even have air conditioners with refrigeration function.
If you don't have air conditioning, you're at a higher risk of overheating during the hot and humid summer conditions. Overall, air-conditioning is the best protective factor against heat-related illness and death. And this is something to take seriously. Not only are heat stroke and heat exhaustion a risk, but extreme heat can also increase the chances of dying from cardiovascular conditions like heart attack and respiratory conditions like pneumonia. In fact, in a 2020 study, researchers estimated that 5,600 deaths per year were related to heat in the US.
If you're unable to invest in an air conditioner during the summer, or can't access indoor locations with air conditioning, such as community cooling centers, it's imperative that you follow these recommendations to stay cool.
1. Drink lots of water
Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water — dehydration can set in before you notice any symptoms. BraunS/Getty Images
Frequently drinking water is one of the best protective measures against heat-related illness. That's because when you're well-hydrated, your body is able to sweat, and when you sweat it evaporates off your skin, cooling you down.
But when you're dehydrated, you can't sweat as effectively which makes you less able to deal with hot temperatures. Usually your body will become dehydrated before you notice the signs, so it's important you don't wait until you feel thirsty to drink.
2. Use cold washcloths
Use a washcloth, ice bag, or ice pack to cool your pulse points. Applying a cold, damp cloth directly to your skin can help lower your temperature. The Mayo Clinic recommends placing it on your pulse points — such as the back of your neck, under your armpits, on your wrists, or on your groin. In these areas, your blood vessels are close to the surface of your skin, meaning the cold will extract more heat from your body and bring your temperature down more quickly.
Prepare a cold washcloth by:
1.Wetting a towel with cool water
2.Squeezing out excess water, so that the towel is damp
3.Leaving it in the refrigerator — the longer you leave it, the colder it will be
If you use ice packs, make sure to never apply ice directly to the skin, as this can burn it. Instead, wrap the ice in a towel or blanket and apply for no more than 20 minutes every two to four hours.
Although it can give temporary relief, taking a cool bath or shower actually increases our core temperature. Your skin temperature falls and you'll feel cooler, but the cold water reduces blood flow to the skin, so you'll actually keep more heat inside.
3. Eat cool foods and avoid alcohol
A salad with watermelon, cucumber, and mint makes a nutritious, cooling snack or side dish. Here are some of the best foods and drinks to cool yourself down:
Vegetables contain lots of water, which can help hydrate you and keep you cool. Lettuce, for instance, is 95% water and cucumber is 96% water.
In addition, salads require no cooking, and anything you can prep on hot days without your stove or oven is best since it'll help keep your house, and you, cooler.
Not only is watermelon a summer staple for picnics and barbecues, but it's also 90% water.
"The pink flesh contains vitamins C and A and the antioxidant lycopene, which helps in protecting you from the sun too," says Tanya Zuckerbrot, a registered dietitian at a private practice. "This is the perfect snack to cool off and replenish electrolytes that are lost as you sweat in the sun."
Fresh mint can be grown in the garden and provides an instant cooling sensation. It's a zero-calorie addition that will freshen any drink or snack.
"Ironically, spicy foods are a great way to beat the heat," Zuckerbrot says. "Eating something that will cause sweating, nature's way of cooling us down, will allow you to withstand the sun."
Sweating can lead to dehydration, though, so make sure to consume substantial water throughout the day.
In addition to drinking water, adding some ice to it is not such a bad idea when you're trying to stay cool.
According to a small 2016 study, men who exercised in the heat were able to stay cooler when drinking "ice slurry," a mixture of crushed ice and water. And, a small 2021 study also found that drinking the ice and water mixture during post-workout recovery brought down subjects' core and skin temperature more effectively than a beverage with no ice.
If straight water and ice sounds boring, try frozen fruit instead. Or make your own homemade popsicles with fresh fruit and juices. Just be aware of how much sugar is in those juices since consuming too much sugar may dehydrate you.
"Skip the margaritas and mojitos," says Karen Ansel, MS, registered dietitian nutritionist and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "A summertime cocktail might seem like just the thing for a warm evening, but too much alcohol can cause your body to lose water."
If water starts to sound bland, rethink your ice cubes, Ansel says. Adding frozen berries, grapes, or melon chunks to sparkling water is a refreshing way to switch things up.
4. Stay low
In general, you'll stay cooler if you hang out on the lowest levels of a structure. This is because hot air rises and cool air settles. Instead of hanging out upstairs, try moving your normal activities to your lowest level or basement.
You can also try sitting and sleeping on the floor, since it's likely the coldest part of your house.
5. Cool yourself down at bedtime
Sleeping in the heat doesn't have to be miserable. Try these tips to feel cooler at night:
Sleep alone. If you're struggling to keep cool at night, stay away from other sources of heat, including the body heat from your partner or pets.
Wear the right materials. Go for cooling pajamas made of materials specifically formulated for cooling, or wear natural materials, including wool. A small 2019 study showed that wearing wool sleepwear in a room with the temperature set at 86 °F helped subjects get to sleep faster than when they wore cotton or polyester sleepwear of similar thickness. This could be because wool is breathable, wicks moisture, and helps regulate body temperature.
Let the cool night air in. If it's cooler outside at night, and you feel safe doing so, open a window. Better yet, open two windows to encourage a cross breeze. You can also set up window fans to help blow the hot air out and the fresh, cool air in.
Take a warm shower or bath before bed. Taking a warm shower or bath before bed will not only keep you cooler, but it can also help you fall asleep more quickly and enjoy better sleep quality, according to a 2019 review.
Invest in cooling bedding. Stay cooler at night by investing in breathable bedding materials made of linen or cotton. There are also brands that make cooling pillows, mattresses, and mattress toppers that can be a game-changer for hot sleepers.
6. Use spray
Spraying yourself with cool water sounds like a no-brainer on a hot day. But it could be just the balm against uncomfortable heat that you need.
In fact, it might even cool you down more than ingesting an icy beverage.
According to 2016 research, applying cool water to skin and letting it evaporate helps your body lose more heat than it would if you drank an ice slurry. Researchers noted that this works best in dry, breezy climates, rather than humid ones, since humidity keeps liquid and sweat from evaporating as efficiently.
Add an electric fan, and you'll have even more cooling power. A 2020 review compiled evidence that spraying water on people's skin while they were using a fan could help them stay cooler.
7. Select a valid fan
Fans can't lower the temperature of an entire room. However, fans can create a wind-chill effect, so you feel cooler. Basically, when a fan blows air around, it helps sweat evaporate from your skin, which cools you down.
Wmshoe provide some cost-effective fans.Some of them have spray function, which can effectively protect you from high temperature in hot summer.
7. Wear hat, sunglasses and comfortable sandals if you must go out
Remember to wear a hat, sunglasses and comfortable sandals when you have to go out. When the temperature is too high, you should not stay outdoors for too long and need to ask for help in time when you feel unwell.