Beat the Heat Avoiding Heat Illnesses

Spending summer outdoors in the pool beats icy roads and rainy days. The sun will give you a good tan in the heat, but if you aren’t careful, you can suffer from a heat-related illness. Summer is here, and it’s crucial to understand the risk that comes with being in the heat for extended amounts of time.

Heat-related illnesses and their symptoms
Heat-related illnesses occur when a person is exposed to excessive humidity or heat for an extended time without proper hydration. There are three types of heat-related illnesses: Heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. Heat cramps are the mildest form of heat-related illness, and heat stroke is the most severe.

Heat cramps are random muscle spasms that occur during heavy exercise or continuous movement in the heat. The Mayo Clinic believes that fluid and electrolyte loss often contribute to heat cramps. Symptoms include excessive sweating, thirst, fatigue and muscle spasms. Heat cramps are considered the first stage in heat exhaustion, according to John Hopkins Medicine.

Heat exhaustion includes symptoms of heat cramps plus low blood sugar, nausea, headaches, and dark urine. According to MedExpress urgent care, it’s hard to keep yourself cool when your body becomes overexerted. Other factors such as age, the condition of health, and medications can also increase your risk of heat exhaustion. Children and adults ages 65 and older have an increased risk of heat exhaustion. It has been estimated that 65% of individuals older than 60 years of age experience dizziness or loss of balance, often on a daily basis. This puts them at a greater risk so, always ensure these adults have adequate hydration in the heat.

Heat stroke is the most severe and requires immediate attention. symptoms of heat stroke are vomiting, confusion, rapid heart rate, and fever. If you suspect a heat stroke, call 911 immediately.

The heat of the moment: Staying safe in the heat
Staying hydrated is the most important. NextCare urgent care recommends eight cups of water a day if you’re a woman and 12 if you’re a man. Drink water and sports drinks every 15 to thirty 30 minutes and rest your body when you get the chance.

If you experience heat exhaustion, you should stop and rest, move to a place to cool down and remove any unnecessary clothing, replenish your body’s fluids with sports drinks or water, and stretch your muscles.

If symptoms continue, visit an urgent care center or hospital immediately. Urgent care centers move quickly, and they treat dehydration. They have grown more capable of handling many medical conditions and symptoms and 85% of urgent care centers are open seven days a week.

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