Tips for identifying, and protecting against, heat-related illnesses

33418626 - a very hot summer day

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After record-setting temps this past holiday weekend, it’s a good time for a reminder about safety in extreme heat and humidity conditions.

The first sign of a heat-related illness may be muscle cramping, which may lead to heat exhaustion or stroke. Remember, NEVER leave a child or pet in a locked car, where the temperature can rise rapidly. Also, elderly residents are more susceptible to heat-related illness, so take precautions.

Look for these symptoms if you’re going to be outside during times of high temperatures and humidity.

HEAT EXHAUSTION
Symptoms

  • Heavy sweating
  • Weakness
  • Cold, pale and clammy skin
  • Fast, weak pulse
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting

What to do

  • Move to a cooler location
  • Lie down and loosen your clothing
  • Apply cool, wet cloths to as much of your body as possible
  • Sip water
  • If you have vomited and it continues, seek immediate medical attention

HEAT STROKE
Symptoms

  • High body temperature of above 103 degrees F
  • Hot, red, dry or moist skin
  • Rapid and strong pulse
  • Possible unconsciousness

What to do

  • Call 911 immediately
  • Move the person to a cooler environment
  • Reduce the person’s body temperature with cool cloths or a bath
  • Do NOT give the person fluids

 

 

Laura King-Homan

About Laura King-Homan

Laura King-Homan is a contributor to the Storm & Outage Center and a communications specialist at OPPD. She has nearly 20 years of print journalism and design experience, which lets her tell the stories of OPPD and its employees both graphically and through her writing.

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