The last week has been wall to wall sunshine, with the temperatures edging 30c every day, and not falling much below 15c at night. The weather has been hotter in the southeast of England than in many parts of the Mediterranean. For many of us, it’s been even hotter than those nighttime figures, simply because there has been little or no breeze to help get rid of the heat that has built up during the day. And whilst I’ve been loving every minute of it, basking in childhood memories of the summer of ’76, I’ve also been struggling to cope with it too.
If I’m honest, I’ve gotten into a series of comfortable routines that normally allow me to manage my ileostomy without giving it too much extra thought. But the increase in temperatures, especially at night when the humidity can be high too, has been quietly playing havoc with my hydration. This showed up fairly promptly as a series of blinding headaches, usually starting mid-morning, backing off a little after lunch (when I’d have something to drink), then coming back with a vengeance later in the afternoon. The first couple of days I didn’t even think about causes – I just took a couple of paracetamol (which didn’t work!) and soldiered on.
And then the penny dropped.
So since then I’ve been consciously trying to drink a lot of extra water, and in general it seems to be working, though I still seem to be very much more lethargic than normal. But the point of this post is that even though I know all the signs of dehydration, and that I should be looking out for them in myself, it still took me a couple of days to realize what was happening and adapt. Which is not very smart.