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arrow First Aid and Other Safety Tips For Hot Weather
 

When it is hotter than 95 degrees, don't use a fan! At extreme high temperatures, a fan loses its ability to effectively reduce heat-related illness. When it is that hot, use fans to blow hot air out of the window rather than to blow hot air on your body.

Excessive Heat Warning/Advisories are issued when an excessive heat event is expected in the  next 36 hours. These products are issued when an excessive heat event is  occurring, is imminent, or has a very high probability of occurring. The  warning is used for conditions posing a threat to life. An advisory is for less  serious conditions that cause significant discomfort or inconvenience and, if  caution is not taken, could lead to a threat to life. 

The Hazards of Excessive Heat  

During extremely hot and humid weather the body's ability to  cool itself is affected. When the body heats too rapidly to cool itself properly,  or when too much fluid or salt is lost through dehydration or sweating, body  temperature rises and heat-related illnesses may develop.

Heat-related illnesses can range from heat cramps to heat  exhaustion to more serious heat stroke. Heat stroke can result in death and  requires immediate medical attention

Factors or  conditions that can make some people more susceptible to heat-related illnesses  include age (older adults and young children), obesity, fever, heart disease,  mental illness, poor circulation, prescription drug and alcohol use, and  sunburn. Sunburn, caused by ultraviolet radiation from the sun, can significantly retard the skin's ability  to shed excess heat. 

Heat-Related Illness Symptoms and  First Aid

 HEAT CRAMPS

  • Symptoms:           

     

    • Painful muscle cramps and spasms  usually in legs and abdomen
    • Heavy sweating

 

  • First Aid:                       
    • Apply firm pressure on cramping  muscles or gentle massage to relieve spasm.
    • Give sips of water, if nausea  occurs, discontinue water

HEAT EXHAUSTION

  • Symptoms:

     

    • Heavy sweating
    • Weakness
    • Cool, pale, clammy skin
    • Weak pulse
    • Possible muscle cramps
    • Dizziness
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Fainting
    • Normal temperature possible

 

  • First Aid:              
    • Move person to a cooler environment
    • Remove or loosen clothing
    • Apply cool, wet cloths
    • Fan or move victim to air conditioned  room
    • Offer sips of water. If nausea  occurs, discontinue water. If vomiting continues, seek immediate medical  attention
  • Symptoms:

     

    • Altered mental state
    • Possible throbbing headache,  confusion, nausea, dizziness, shallow breathing
    • High body temperature (106°F or  higher)
    • Skin may be hot and dry, or patient  may be sweating
    • Rapid pulse
    • Possible unconsciousness

 

  • First Aid:               
    • Heat  stroke is a severe medical emergency. Summon emergency medical assistance or  get the victim to a hospital immediately. Delay can be fatal.
    • Move the victim to a cooler,  preferably air-conditioned, environment
    • Reduce body temperature with a water  mister and fan or sponging
    • Use fan if heat index temperatures  are below the high 90s
    • Use extreme caution
    • If temperature rises again, repeat  process
    • Do NOT give fluids

 

Never Leave Children, Disabled Adults or Pets  in Parked Vehicles 

Each year, dozens of children and untold numbers of pets left  in parked vehicles die from hyperthermia. Hyperthermia is an acute condition  that occurs when the body absorbs more heat than it can handle. Hyperthermia  can occur even on a mild day. Studies have shown that the temperature inside a  parked vehicle can rapidly rise to a dangerous level for children, pets and  even adults.  Leaving the windows slightly open does not significantly  decrease the heating rate. The effects can be more severe on children because  their bodies warm at a faster rate than adults.   

Safety Tips Concerning Children:

 

  • Make sure your child's safety seat and safety belt buckles aren't too hot before securing your child in a safety restraint system, especially when your car has been parked in the heat.

 

  • Never leave your child unattended in a vehicle, even with the windows down.

 

  • Teach children not to play in, on, or around cars.
  • Always  lock car doors and trunks--even at home--and keep keys out of children's reach.
  • Always make sure all children have left the car when you reach your destination. Don't leave sleeping infants in the car ever.

 

Safety Tips Concerning Adults: 

Slow down. Reduce, eliminate or reschedule strenuous activities until the coolest time of the day. Children, seniors and anyone with health problems should stay in the coolest available place, not necessarily indoors. 

 

  • Dress for summer. Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect heat and sunlight.
  • Put less fuel on your inner fires. Foods, like meat and other proteins that increase metabolic heat  production also increase water loss.
  • Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. Your body needs water to keep cool. Drink plenty of fluids even if you don't feel thirsty. Persons who have epilepsy or heart,kidney or liver disease, are on fluid restrictive diets or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a physician before increasing their consumption of fluids
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages and limit caffeinated beverages.  
  • During excessive heat periods, spend more time in air-conditioned places. Air conditioning in homes and other buildings markedly reduces danger from the heat. If you cannot afford an air conditioner, go to a library, store or other location with air conditioning for part of  the day. 
  • Don't get too much sun. Sunburn reduces your body's ability to dissipate heat.
  • Do not take salt tablets unless specified by a physician.


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