Heat related illnesses can occur year round, but it is especially a concern when temperatures reach into the triple digits. The worst illness, being heatstroke, could place you in the hospital for a couple days and take two months to a year for a full recovery.
One big warning sign with heatstroke is that you will go from profusely sweating, to not sweating at all. This is because your body has become too dehydrated to cool off naturally.
Dr. Annabelle Jordan of Southwest Medical Park Pediatric Urgent Care emphasizes heatstroke symptoms will often bring on mental status changes including delirium, hallucinations and possible seizure.
With heatstroke the main goal is to get the core body temperature under 104 degrees. When your body reaches these high temperatures it can result in organ failure and even death.
Staying outdoors for a prolonged period of time when temperatures reach 90 degrees and above can also result in heat exhaustion, the precursor to heat stroke. Those symptoms range from cold, pale and clammy skin, sweating, nausea, dizziness. You should be able to reverse heat exhaustion by getting into an air conditioned room, drinking fluids, getting in lightweight clothing, using cool clothes or taking a cool bath or shower. Even swimming is a good way to cool your core body temperature. If you notice your symptoms haven’t improved within thirty minutes or the situation is getting worse then you should seek medical assistance immediately.
No matter the time of day high energy activities in the sun can put anyone at risk. Those who are more susceptible, like the younger and older populations, are unable to regulate their temperature due to age or medication so make sure to pay closer attention to them in hot conditions. Heat is the number one weather related killer in the United States, so always air on the side of caution when symptoms arise.