Taking precautions as temperatures rise

Published: May. 17, 2023 at 6:30 PM CDT|Updated: May. 17, 2023 at 6:56 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - As summer starts, student-athletes are hard at work training for the next school year. School officials and doctors urge students to take the proper precautions and prevent overheating.

Schools nationwide use the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature to judge whether practicing is safe.

The Wet Bulb takes into account the wind, sun angle, humidity, and cloud cover.

During hot and humid days, our sweat does evaporate quickly; this explains why we feel hotter on days with higher humidity. When outside, try and watch for these symptoms.

“If you are out there a long time, then you start to lose potassium, sodium, electrolytes, and things of that nature. So you need to replenish those with a sports drink,” said Dr. Shane Speights of NYIT.

Making sure your child hydrates properly while exercising or participating in sports during peak heating.

Some instances, our body’s cooling system shuts down entirely under extreme heat. This is where we see people lose consciousness or begin having seizures. Once this takes place, an emergency room visit is on order.

“The big thing is to get them out of the heat as quickly as you can, make they are getting hydrated, cool them off, and get them evaluated by a physician,” Speights explained.

Getting your athlete acclimated to hot weather is another preventive measure you can take to help keep your child safe during practice. Many factors could put you or your child at a heightened risk of heat-related illnesses. Dr. Shane Speights said medications play a bigger role than you think.

“High blood pressure or on a certain heart medication, so individuals that take certain medications that would predispose because they don’t manage their fluid the same way,” said Dr. Speights.