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Heat waves

Dangers we face during periods of very high temperatures include:

Heat cramps: These are muscular pains and spasms due to heavy exertion. They are an early signal that the body is having trouble with the heat.

Heat exhaustion: This typically occurs when people exercise heavily or work in a hot, humid place where body fluids are lost through heavy sweating. Blood flow to the skin increases, causing blood flow to decrease to the vital organs. This results in a form of mild shock. If not treated, the victim may suffer heat stroke.

Heat stroke (sunstroke): Heat stroke is life-threatening. The victims temperature control system, which produces sweating to cool the body, stops working. The body temperature can rise so high that brain damage and death may result if the body is not cooled quickly.

If a heat wave is predicted or happening:

  • Slow down. Avoid strenuous activity.
  • Stay indoors as much as possible. W
  • Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Drink plenty of water regularly and often.
  • Eat small meals and eat more often.
  • Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a physician.