Extreme summer temperatures are not only uncomfortable, they are also dangerous for your health. This is particularly true for older adults and children who are more susceptible to illness. Read on to learn more about heat-related illnesses and tips for preventing them.
Heat Exhaustion occurs when the body is not able to sweat enough to cool itself. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
- Dizziness, weakness, nausea, headache and vomiting
- Blurry vision
- Body temperature 38.3° C
- Sweaty skin
- Feeling hot and thirsty
- Having difficulty speaking
When someone is suffering from heat exhaustion, he/she should move into a cooler place and drink plenty of water immediately.
Heat Stroke is the result of untreated heat exhaustion and includes the following symptoms:
- Unawareness of heat and thirst
- Body temperature rises rapidly above 38.3° C
- Confusion or delirium
- Loss of consciousness
When someone is suffering from heat stroke, medical personnel should be called immediately, as the condition is life-threatening. Place ice packs on the person's armpits and groin until help arrives.
To avoid heat illnesses in summer temperatures, remember to drink lots of water – even if you are not thirsty. Additionally, wear light-coloured, lightweight clothing made of natural fibres and put on a well-ventilated hat. Lastly, avoid leaving air-conditioned areas in the middle of the day if you can. Instead, get things done outside in the early morning or evening when temperatures are cooler.