Protect yourself from the heat - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Protect yourself from the heat

Protect Yourself from the Heat

When your body is unable to cool itself by sweating, several heat-induced illnesses such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion and potentially life-threatening heatstroke can occur.

Factors Leading to a Heat-Induced Illness:
  • High temperature and humidity
  • Direct sun or heat
  • Limited air movement
  • Physical exertion
  • Poor physical condition
  • Some medicines
  • Inadequate tolerance for hot places
Heat Cramps

Symptoms:

  • Painful, involuntary muscle spasms
  • The spasms may be more intense than typical nighttime leg cramps.
  • Muscles most often affected include those in your calves, arms, abdomen and back.

What to do:

  • Drink clear juice or a sports drink containing electrolytes.
  • Practice gentle, range-of-motion stretching and massage.
  • If your cramps don't go away in one hour, call your doctor.
Heat Exhaustion

Symptoms:

  • Headache, dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting
  • Weakness and moist skin
  • Mood changes such as irritability or confusion
  • Upset stomach or vomiting
  • Severe thirst
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Body temperature of 105 degrees
  • Rapid, weak heartbeat

What to do:

  • Move to a cool, shaded area
  • Loosen or remove heavy clothing
  • Drink cool water
  • Follow with a weak salt solution: 1 tsp. salt per liter of water
  • Fan the person
  • Mist or sponge the person with water
  • Lie down; elevate feet slightly
Heat Stroke

Symptoms:

  • Dry, hot skin with no sweating
  • Mental confusion or loss of consciousness
  • Seizures or fits
  • Severe, throbbing headache
  • Weakness, dizziness or confusion
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Flushed, hot, dry skin
  • Elevation of body temperature to 105 degrees

What to do:

  • Call 911 immediately
  • Move to a cool, shaded area
  • Loosen or remove heavy clothing
  • Drink cool water
  • Fan the person
  • Mist or sponge the person with water
  • Lie down; elevate feet slightly
Think Prevention!
  • Know the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses
  • Block out direct sun or other heat sources
  • Use cooling fans or air conditioning (if available)
  • Drink a lot of water: about 1 cup every 15 minutes, even if you're not thirsty
  • Wear lightweight, light colored, loose-fitting clothing
  • Avoid alcohol, caffeinated drinks and heavy meals
  • Participate in heavy outdoor activity before noon or after 6 p.m.
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