While most of us look forward to Summer, it’s important to remember that summer temperatures can be a safety concern if you are older or have health problems. Seniors make up most heat related deaths.
Types of Heat related illnesses:
- Dizziness which can occur if you are overly active or if you take certain beta blocker medications.
- Excess heat can also cause swelling in you lower limbs
- Heat exhaustion, which happens when you body can no longer keep itself cool. Symptoms include weakness, nausea, dizziness, excessive thirst, and even rapid pulse.
- Excess heat can also cause cramps resulting in painful tightening of muscles in your stomach, arms, or legs.
- The most serious safety concern is Heat Stroke. Symptoms include fainting, confusion, agitation, loss of coordination, high fever, a fast or very slow pulse and/or failure to sweat even though the temperature is high. If you are experiencing these types of symptoms, you should seek medical help immediately.
Ways to avoid heat related illnesses:
- Avoid being outside for excessive time periods
- Dress in light weight fabrics
- Avoid exercising during the during the hottest times of the day
- Try and run errands early in the morning or later in the afternoon when the temperatures are lower.
- Check the weather report before going out. If the temperature or humidity levels are high, stay indoors
- Avoid drinking caffeinated or alcoholic beverages which can cause dehydration.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Spend time in air-conditioned places. Use fans to help circulated the air and keep windows open if your home does not have air conditioning.