Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Many Shades of Yellow

There's supposed to be relief in sight with the temperatures and precipitation in Michigan tonight. One can only hope. The lawn feels like concrete and my flowers are wilting. Lord, it feels like Hot is here to stay and let us not forget Hot's friend who is also in town. Humid. Humid is a beast.

I got word late yesterday afternoon that I'd be doing a start of care in Detroit. Knowing what I do after 2 years of home visits, I started tanking up on fluids well before appointment time. In the 3 hours I was in that patient's 90 plus degree home, I didn't have to pee once--fluid loss in the form of sweat was doing my body's job of fluid elimination. Though I'd showered at 3 PM, I came home, showered again at 7 and began replenishing my body with fluids. Still, it was a good 2 hours before I needed to use the facilities. That's remarkable for my admittedly weak bladder.

The emergency rooms are hopping with heat related incidents and two people have died. One, a homeless woman who, for whatever reason, was inside a car, and the other, an elderly man who died in his home in Grosse Pointe. It was well over 100 degrees in the elderly man's home when he and his wife were found. He'd elected not to put central air in his home, though from the looks of his neighborhood, it wasn't because he couldn't afford such a luxury. Still, the main problem was likely because he became dehydrated. We should take a lesson from these people.

Remember my hot friends...thirst is a LATE sign of dehydration. Better to assess your hydration needs by the color and amount of your urinary output. Pale yellow is what you're aiming for and any more of a color show is a good indication to keep filling your tank. No output? You are way behind and likely need medical assistance. Severe dehydration can cause kidney failure. It's a good idea to alternate your choice of fluids between water and diluted electrolyte solutions, though I prefer to eat my salt in the form of salted snacks like pretzels, crackers or nuts. Electrolyte solutions and I don't get along. No caffeine (ya right!) and no alkyhawl. I can comply with no alcohol, though a cold one sounds tasty in the late afternoons, but the caffeine? If I didn't start my day with a cup of joe, well it wouldn't be a good start at all. I'll have to drink extra water to make up.

I hope you're staying cool. Me? I'm hoping for inpatient starts of care for tonight. In the meantime, just in case of a repeat of last night, I'm going to start tanking up early. In addition, I'm praying hard for rain.



12 comments:

Brenda said...

The heat has been awful here also, but the humidity makes it unbearable. I hate to say it, but I still prefer this to winters with no sunshine and no color to look at. But those are some good things to remember for us that you wrote about. I loved the way you spelled alcohol.

sapphireblue said...

There's a lot of houses here in CO that don't have A/C. I don't know how the elderly get along without it.

distracted by shiny objects said...

Love the new header photo!!

We're not air conditioned either, except for the bedroom. Be throwing money into the streets to try and cool down the 2nd and 3rd floor here. I keep finding water glasses in every room and keep washing them! Thank God NCIS plays non-stop--we do a couple of chores, watch a little DiNozzo, and work a little bit more, blog a little bit...Doing the cooldown/rain dance also!

Stephanie V said...

Does not sound like fun! And very good advice. I don't know why the older folks do not drink more water...my grandmother swore it was just plain wrong to drink water if you weren't thirsty.

The heat is on here - and the humidity comes along with it. We just sort of jumped from October into August with no in between. But after so many weeks of gray skies, I'm still happy with the sunshine.

Miss 376 said...

Most people don't drink enough at the best of times, becomes a real problem in the heat

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

very good advice!

thanks, smiles, bee
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox

Finding Pam said...

Rudee, that is sound advice. My firefighter son in training got sick with a virus, got dehydrated and ended up in the ER. I know he drinks plenty of water.

I am sorry that you have to work inside some of the homes without AC. I hope the heat ends soon for the folks that just are't used to it. We have never known anything different. It does make me grouchy.

Mimi said...

Good advice, Rudee, esp the bit about urine colour.
I came over from Stephanie's.
We've no need of A/C here, opening a window (if even that!) does it! But, we've had some really good weather the last few weeks, and i haven't been good with the water. Off to get a drink of it now, though I'd prefer a glass of wine!

Gail said...

We have a chance of rain so hoping...

Drink heavy and take care.

Like the new header.

Quiltluver said...

Can't wait for the relief tomorrow. MDOT actually stopped some road work yesterday and today due to the heat. Can't imagine what it's like to be working outside in this heat and humidity. Glad we have AC at work & home.

Sandy said...

oh so hot it sounds like. Great advice too and I'm going to copy and paste it and email it to my son who works in the son all day framing...and he is a beer drinker and not a water drinker. I'm on him a lot about hydration.

We are having unseasonably cooler weather right now but with a heat up coming.

and yes, that beast humidity is what get to me more than dry heat.

Rositta said...

It's was just as hot and humid here Rudee and lucky us today we had a nice downpour. Now it's just nice and comfortable without the humidity. That's how I like it. No one has died here this time around but I did hear about the Detroit death. Sad really, I used to have trouble getting my Mom to drink water...ciao