How to prevent discomfort due to overwhelming heat?
The symptoms During extreme heat, the body must exert considerable efforts to maintain a normal temperature. In addition, the chances of developing symptoms are increased tenfold if exposure is prolonged or if physical exertion is exerted simultaneously. Thus, when a person is in an environment where the heat is extreme, he may experience the following short-term discomforts :
- Muscle cramps;
- Dehydration (dry skin, intense thirst, fast heartbeat, jerky breathing, dark urine);
- Swelling of the hands, feet and ankles;
- Exhaustion or unusual fatigue;
- Rashes ("heat rashes");
The "heat stroke" : an emergency situationIn some people, the above symptoms can turn into ailments requiring prompt intervention by healthcare professionals : - this is called "heat stroke" - a serious condition that can lead to death. Here are the main signs :
- Elevated body temperature;
- Confusion or hallucinations;
- Breathing difficulties;
- Dizziness or vertigo;
- Red and dry skin (no sweat);
- Loss of consciousness.
Who is at risk? The people most prone to heat stroke are children aged 5 and under, the elderly with loss of autonomy, individuals with an illness, drug addicts, employees whose work requires effort physical, workers exposed to heat-emitting equipment, and people who do not have access to cool or air-conditioned places.
There are several ways to prevent your health from deteriorating during oppressive and extreme heat. Here are the main ones :
- Go to places where the air is fresh or air-conditioned places;
- Keep a cool, damp towel handy and run it regularly over your skin;
- Stay hydrated (8 glasses of water per day);
- Limit your physical efforts;
- Set aside alcohol (since it contributes to the phenomenon of dehydration);
- Take showers or baths in cool water.