North Santa Rosa

Prevent heat-related illnesses

High pressure combined with a very moist atmosphere will result in high afternoon heat indices in the 108 to 110 range for Friday afternoon. Slightly cooler temperatures return on Saturday as a weak cold front moves in from the south. Summer heat waves can be dangerous, and Santa Rosa Emergency Management urges residents to take caution to prevent heat illnesses with these tips.Drink plenty of fluids. Increase your fluid intake regardless of your activity level. If you routinely exercise in hot weather, drink 2-4 glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool fluids each hour. Consult with your doctor if you have been prescribed a fluid-restricted diet or diuretics. Avoid very cold beverages to prevent stomach cramps or drinks containing alcohol, which will actually cause you to lose more fluid. 

Replace salt and minerals. Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body, which are necessary for your body and must be replaced. The best way to replace salt and minerals is to drink fruit juice or a sports beverage during exercise or any work in the heat. 

Wear appropriate clothing and sunscreen. Wear as little clothing as possible when you are at home. Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. A wide-brimmed hat will keep the head cool. A variety of sunscreens are available to reduce the risk of sunburn. Select SPF 15 or higher and follow package directions. 

Slow down. Strenuous activities should be reduced, eliminated, or rescheduled to the coolest time of the day. Individuals at risk should stay in the coolest available place, not necessarily indoors. 

Stay cool indoors. The most efficient way to beat the heat is to stay in an air conditioned area. If you do not have an air conditioner or evaporative cooling unit, consider a visit to a shopping mall or public library for a few hours. Do not rely on electric fans as your primary cooling device during a heat wave. A cool shower or bath is a more effective way to cool off. 

Schedule outdoor activities carefully. If you must be out in the heat, plan your activities so that you are outdoors either before noon or in the evening. While outdoors, rest frequently in a shady area. 

Use a buddy system. When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your coworkers and have someone do the same for you. If you are 65 years of age or older, have someone call to check on you twice a day during a heat wave. If you know anyone in this age group, check on them at least twice a day. 

Monitor those at high risk. Those at greatest risk of heat-related illness include: 

* infants and children up to four years of age; 

* people who overexert during work or exercise; 

* people 65 years of age or older; 

* people who are ill or on certain medications; and 

* people who are overweight. 

Use common sense. NEVER leave infants, children, an elderly person or pets in a parked car. Bring your pets indoors with you to protect them or if they must stay outside, offer them plenty of fresh water, leave the water in a shady area, and consider wetting the animal down. 

Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion 

Heat stroke occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature. Body temperature may rise to 106°F or higher. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not given. Heat exhaustion is the body’s response to an excessive loss of water and salt contained in sweat. Those most prone to heat exhaustion are elderly people and people working or exercising in a hot environment. 

Warning signs of heat stroke vary but may include: 

* an extremely high body temperature (above 103°F, orally); 

* unconsciousness; * dizziness, nausea, and confusion; 

* red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating); 

* rapid, strong pulse; and 

* throbbing headache. 

Warning signs of heat exhaustion vary but may include: 

* heavy sweating; 

* muscle cramps; 

* weakness; * headache; 

* nausea or vomiting; and 

* paleness, tiredness, dizziness. 

What to Do 

If you see any of these signs, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate medical assistance while you begin cooling the victim: 

* Get the victim to a shady area and cool the victim rapidly using whatever methods you can – immerse victim in cool water, place in a cool shower, spray with cool water from a garden hose, or sponge with cool water. 

* Monitor body temperature, and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101­°F. 

* Get medical assistance as soon as possible. Sometimes a victim’s muscles will begin to twitch uncontrollably as a result of heat stroke. If this happens, keep the victim from injuring himself, but do not place any object in the mouth and do not give fluids. If there is vomiting, make sure the airway remains open by turning the victim on his or her side. 

Your best defense against heat-related illness is prevention. Staying cool and making simple changes in your fluid intake, activities, and clothing during hot weather can help you remain safe and healthy. 

Posted by on Jun 18 2016. Filed under Announcements, Local, Sports, Top News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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