Staying cool

25th November 2019

As the temperature starts to heat up leading into summer, you may notice your symptoms starting to flare up. This can include an increase in fatigue, muscle weakness, sensory symptoms or visual changes.

The best way to reduce the effect of heat on your body, is to keep your body temperature down. Try these strategies to beat the heat this summer.

  • Listen to weather forecasts and plan your day. Avoid going out in the hottest parts of the day.
  • Use air conditioning in the home and car. Use a small personal fan to cool face and body.
  • Remember that a parked car can become quite hot – avoid direct hot sun and park under cover or use a windscreen shield. Cool down the steering wheel with a wet cloth or have someone turn on the air conditioning before you get in if possible.
  • Keep curtains and blinds closed during the heat of the day.
  • Freeze water bottles to take on outings. Suck an ice cube, icy pole or frozen fruit chunks.
  • Avoid hot showers, baths or spas. Make the last part of your shower a cool (or cold) one.
  • Wear a wide brimmed hat when out in the sun.
  • Wear lightweight, loose clothing (light colours can also help).
  • Wet tea towels (or wrap ice packs in a towel) and hold against your body.
  • Use a spray bottle to lightly spray yourself with water.
  • Wear cooling products such as cooling neck ties or ice vests.
  • Exercise in the cool of the day and in a cool environment.

Drinking plenty of water can also help to keep your body temperature down. On average, adults should drink between 1.5 and 2 litres of water every day. To get more water into your diet try carrying a water bottle around, adding fruit to your water, and avoiding caffeine and sugary drinks.

Symptoms caused by the heat are not permanent and you should feel better as your body cools down. If you’re feeling concerned or symptoms persist, contact your GP or MS nurse.

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Staying cool