Europe is braced for record-breaking temperatures this week, as a massive heatwave settles over the continent. We pulled together some health advice for travellers who may find their trip just got a whole lot hotter.

UPDATE: Information from FCO about temperature in France added below. 

Health advice

  • Check the weather forecast when making plans for the day.
  • Avoid going out in the sun during the hottest part of the day – this is usually between 11:00 – 15:00. Minimise your activities during this part of the day, and do not try to do too much overall. 
  • Wear sunscreen and top it up regularly. Make sure it is in date and offers appropriate UVA and UVB protection. Wear a hat, light clothing and sunglasses too. Sunglasses should have a CE mark, UV400 label or a statement that they offer 100 per cent UV (ultraviolet) protection
  • Make sure you and your travel companions stay hydrated. Regularly drink water throughout the day – aim for at least 8 glasses. If you are drinking alcohol, be aware it can dehydrate you further. Make sure you drink water with your booze. 
  • Be aware transport might be disrupted. If you are planning day trips, have a back up plan for your journey home. 
  • Know the signs of heat exhaustion and how to contact medical services should you need them.

Public Health England has advice on how to stay safe during a heatwave.

When to seek help

The NHS advises you to contact a doctor or medical service if someone has these symptoms –

  • breathlessness
  • chest pain
  • confusion
  • intense thirst
  • weakness
  • vomiting or nausea
  • dizziness
  • cramps that get worse or don’t go away
At risk groups

The NHS warns that the following groups are most vulnerable to high temperatures –

  • older people, especially those over 75
  • babies and young children
  • people with a serious chronic condition, especially heart or breathing problems
  • people with mobility problems – for example, people with Parkinson’s disease or who have had a stroke
  • people with serious mental health problems
  • people on certain medications, including those that affect sweating and temperature control
  • people who misuse alcohol or drugs
  • people who are physically active – for example, labourers or those doing sports

Official advice and info

From the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Extreme temperatures are forecast across most of France in the last week of June, with daytime temperatures over 40ºC and overnight temperatures over 20ºC in parts of the country. The French authorities have issued advice (in English) on sensible precautions to take.

from Travel Advice Summary, which can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france

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