If you’ve ever experienced the excruciating sunburns, painful blisters and blistery sores that come along with a particularly hot Florida day, then you know what a pain it is. While there are some things we can do to help mitigate the effects of the sun’s rays, there are few things we can’t do. In this article, we’ll discuss four tips for surviving the heat of Florida sunshine.

First, drink lots of water. Water is great for cooling down and relieving stress. It also helps flush out impurities and speeds up internal functions. Many of us simply don’t drink enough water on a daily basis. When the sun is beating down on you, the temptation is to grab a water bottle of soda in an effort to quench your thirst.

A much better approach is to try to drink more water throughout the day. This is especially important if you work outdoors on a windy day. By expending more energy powering your body and diluting the effects of the heat, you’ll find yourself feeling considerably better in no time. Try drinking a gallon of water for every 100 pounds of your body weight!

Avoid wearing sunscreen. Although many people believe that sunscreen is necessary for sun protection, the fact is that you really need it only for the first two hours of the day. After that, it makes your skin much more susceptible to damage. For this reason, it’s best to leave the sun behind when you’re heading out for the day. Even on days when you wear a light hat with a wide brim or shell, the UV rays will still be beating into your skin.

Bring extra clothes with you. Many of us tend to pack way too much clothing when going out for a day of sunshine. You can cut down on the heat a bit by bringing along items like hats and shirts, instead of an entire outfit of clothing. Bring along some old shirts that you don’t dress up too often and that is at least hung up in a closet or in a spare drawer.

If possible, have a shower prior to hitting the beach. By soaking in a warm tub or getting a hot shower before you hit the water, you can lower your body temperature and reduce the amount of time that you’ll feel the effects of the heat. This will also help you relax a bit more before hitting the beach. Just be careful not to stay in the hot tub for too long, as you could easily burn your skin.

Dress appropriately. If you’re worried about getting too hot in the sun, then dress accordingly. For example, don’t wear a long-sleeved shirt with a baggy T-shirt underneath. Also, don’t wear shorts. Instead, opt for a tennis-length skirt and, if possible, invest in some flip-flops so you’ll be more comfortable in the sand.

The fourth of our 4 tips for surviving the heat of Florida Sunshine is to avoid alcohol and coffee before heading out into the sun. These two substances tend to raise your body’s temperature significantly, making you more susceptible to heat stroke. So, if you know you’re going to be in the water or on the beach for part or all of the day, drink lots of water before you hit the water. Avoid eating or drinking anything immediately before you go, either. Otherwise, you’ll be struggling to keep your body cool when you need to get back in the water.

Fifth tip? Wear sunscreen, even on days that aren’t extremely hot. Sunscreen will shield you from the hottest parts of the sun, preventing you from getting burned. It will also help prevent the damage caused by UV rays, which can also lead to serious health problems.

Sixth tip? Get to shade quickly! If you’re planning on spending a large portion of the day out in the sunshine, don’t plan on staying in a hot hotel or expensive beach house. If you’re used to being inside during the day, spending a large amount of time in the heat without any shade can lead to heat exhaustion, which will quickly lead to heat stroke.

Seventh tip? Plan to eat lunch outside! While we’re on the subject of eating, don’t overeat. If you’re eating a large amount of meals in one sitting, eat several smaller meals throughout the day, and avoid snacking until the late afternoon or evening. Eating lunch outside can be a great way to both get some fresh air and cool down from the heat inside.

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