Heatstroke is common in those states which experience only a few millimeters of rain every year. As the summer approaches, we’re so in love with the warmth, the scenery and the colorful beauty it brings, that we forget that too much of anything can be bad. While the sun might do wonders for your summer tan, heatstroke causes 300 deaths in America each year.
Heatstroke happens because of exposure to excessive heat with a lack of thermoregulation. It leads to fever, disorientation, lack of sweat, and in some cases, also causes seizures. If the condition worsens, it causes organ failure, unconsciousness and inevitably, death.
The condition can happen to anyone so it is wise to take precautions and know how you can take care of your body and understand the signals it is giving you.
Understand the symptoms
Knowing the symptoms of heatstroke is important, especially if you live in a hot and humid place. States like Texas have specific websites and organizations which provide information on heatstroke and how it can be prevented. Symptoms of heatstroke include:
- Body temperature of 103°F or higher
- Rapid heartbeat
- No sweating
- Red, hot, dry skin
- Severe headache
If a person has any of these symptoms, it is always best to call 911 immediately and wait for the ambulance. In that duration, it is essential that the person who has the heatstroke should remain under a cool shade. Take them away from the heat and cover them with a wet cloth, applying ice packs to their body, or place them in a cool tub of water to keep the body temperature below 100˚F. If it is possible, offer the affected person some cold water to drink.
Know your atmosphere
When you’re living in a hot environment, it is best to wear light-weight, light colored and loose fitting clothes to keep them from absorbing the heat. You cannot go out into the heat without expecting it to affect you in some way. There is a medical term called ‘Forgotten Baby Syndrome’, which happens when a person forgets about their child and thus, subjects them to danger. This term was coined because of the many incidents where a child was left in the rear seat of a car and forgotten, thus, subjecting them to closed spaces and congested heat. This caused many incidents of heatstroke which were fatal.
Knowing how the atmosphere affects us is important, because then, a person can take precautions to make sure that it does not affect them negatively. If the heat is excessive, avoid going outside in direct sunlight and make sure that you are well-hydrated. Many athletes who have a constant regime of outdoor exercise are often affected by heatstroke, along with those who have an active lifestyle where they spend most of their time outdoors.
Ask your doctor
As mentioned before, many states have organizations which are designated to educating people about heat-related illnesses. If a person knows that they are susceptible, they should ask their doctor about it. In Texas, there are clinics such as the Tidwell Medical Center in Tidwell, TX or the Lakewood Family Practice in Houston, TX, which cater to all the patients who want to know more about how to take care of their body and prevent heatstrokes.
When going out in the sun, sunscreen isn’t the only thing that’s important, and by taking care of your body, inside out; you can enjoy the heat while staying safe and healthy.