Summertime Emergencies: How to Stay Cool as Summer Heats Up
July 12, 2023
Summertime is a time to go outdoors, relax and have fun. However, since the temperatures are usually high, and with the presence of heat waves, it’s a time also marred with heat-related illnesses. As the temperature rises, taking necessary measures to stay cool and safe is usually essential.
Also, you will likely experience summertime emergencies because of excessive heat. In such emergencies, it’s always advisable to visit an emergency room nearby and get some treatment. If you need an emergency room in Cypress, visit Fairfield Emergency Room since they are experienced in dealing with heat-related illnesses.
Body Psychological Response to Heat Exposure
Heat exposure is usually associated with physical responses such as dehydration. Similarly, the body has significant psychological responses to heat exposure. Like the biological responses to heat exposure, psychological responses differ from person to person. Some common psychological responses to heat exposure include:
- Irritability – heat exposure often causes people to be irritable. They lose their cool over small matters and find it difficult to concentrate on activities. Heat can also lead to the effects of frustration.
- Alertness – Heat exposure makes some people more alert and energized. According to scientists, heat can increase adrenaline production, improving concentration and focus when performing tasks.
- Anxiety – Heat causes stress by increasing blood pressure and heart rate. It leads to feelings of nervousness, worry, and restlessness.
- Fatigue – Heat makes some people feel exhausted and weak. It is often caused by dehydration and electrolyte imbalance since your body cannot effectively cool down.
- Heat exhaustion – occurs when the body cannot cool itself to the necessary levels. Some symptoms of heat exhaustion include nausea, profuse sweating, dizziness, headache, and vomiting. If not treated promptly, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, which is more lethal.
- Heat stroke – A medical emergency happens when the body’s temperature rises to insane levels. Just like a computer or a vehicle, when it cannot cool itself down, it shuts down. Heat stroke is a bodily response when unable to cool itself down. It’s usually a life-threatening condition; should it arise; you should visit an emergency room near you. Its symptoms include seizures, dry skin, hot skin, confusion, and loss of consciousness.
Risk Factors Associated with Heat-Related Illnesses.
There are several risk factors associated with heat-related illnesses. These are factors that escalate your chances of getting a heat-related infection. They include;
- Medical conditions – People with underlying medical conditions, particularly lifestyle conditions, are likelier to get a heat-related illness. These underlying conditions include diabetes, obesity, and heart disease.
- Age – older people and children are at a higher risk of heat-related illnesses since their systems are not very efficient at regulating their body temperatures.
- Occupation – some occupations are in hot environments. People working in such environments are at a higher risk of heat-related illnesses.
- Physical activity – persons who participate in strenuous physical activity, especially in hot weather, are more susceptible to heat illnesses. Such actions cause dehydration, making the body unable to regulate the temperatures.
- Medications – when under specific prescriptions, you are at an increased risk of heat-related illnesses. Such drugs include diuretics and anticholinergics.
- Acclimatization – people from cold regions are at a higher risk of heat-related illnesses once they move to hot weather regions.
- Alcohol and drug abuse – excessive alcohol and drug abuse interfere with the body’s control of the temperatures, thereby increasing the risk of heat-related illnesses.
Tips to Minimize/Avoid Heat-Related Illnesses
Due to the increased risks of heat illnesses, it’s essential to have measures that will help you stay cool as the temperature rises in the summer. They include;
- Hydrate – Drinking plenty of fluids, preferably water, will help massively. Avoid drinks such as alcohol or caffeine since they dehydrate the body too.
- Loose and light clothing – During summer, prioritize wearing loose-fitting and light-colored clothing. It is to prevent heat absorption and retention.
- Stay under a shade – Instead of spending more time in the hot sun, prioritize spending most of your time in the shade, especially when outdoors.
Other Helpful Tips
- Take cool showers.
- Avoid strenuous tasks.
- Ensure you have a backup to power the fans in case of a power outage.
- Ensure you don’t leave young children, older adults, and pets in the vehicle, especially during the daytime.
If you have any concerns that you’re experiencing a heat related illness, have had heat exposure, or are showing signs of heatstroke, visit Fairfield ER in Cypress, TX to be seen at our ER with little to no wait time.