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We seldom think about how dependent we are on electricity until the lights go out. As eastern North Carolina continues to recover from the devastation of Hurricane Matthew many have chosen to fight their battles indoors.

The major concern right now is power outages, says Raleigh local news affiliate WNCN. Over 400,000 customers still do not have electricity.

Duke Energy has been working around the clock, however, with numbers so high a long wait is inevitable. So how can we make the best of our time without dying from cabin fever?

Here are five great tips to help you survive a power outage:

1. Don’t let anything spoil…if you can help it. When it’s time to eat, eat all perishable items first. The last thing you want is to hunt down rotting food in the dark.

2. Only use your phone when absolutely necessary. You’re probably tempted to play games or text, but instead use your phone sparingly to keep your mobile from losing power. You never know when you may really need it.

3. Stay Comfortable. Power outages drastically affect the climate. In summer an outage can make your living room feel like the gates of hell. While catching a cold or even freezing to death are possible outcomes of winter months. Heavy blankets or hand-held fans can go a long way when it comes to braving the elements.

4. Stay Illuminated. Always make sure you have a hefty supply of candles or flashlights.

5. Get some fresh air. Losing power doesn’t mean you have to stay in the house. Get out! Go to the movies, walk the mall, or take a stroll in the park. A little change of scenery may be the perfect thing to clear your mind and lift your spirits.

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