Avoiding Heatstroke

Heatstroke can affect anyone, regardless of age and health. It occurs when a person’s body temperature exceeds 104 F, with symptoms including dizziness, disorientation, confusion and even hallucinations. When a core body temperature of 107 F or greater is reached, cells are damaged and internal organs begin to shut down. This cascade of events can rapidly lead to death. As scary as this sounds, heatstroke is actually predictable and preventable. Take these steps to prevent heatstroke this summer:

  • Wear loose, lightweight clothing so your body can cool properly.
  • Drink plenty of liquids. Staying hydrated will help your body sweat and maintain a normal temperature.
  • Stay in the shade whenever possible. Being out in direct sunlight for a prolonged period of time puts you at an elevated risk for heatstroke and sunburn. Wear shades, a hat and appropriate covering if shade isn’t available.
  • Get acclimated to the heat. People who are not used to hot weather are especially susceptible to heat-related illness. Allow your body several weeks to get used to being outdoors.

Source: Mayo Clinic