Tips to avoid heat troubles this summer
PHILADELPHIA, PA.- June 20, 2012 (WPVI) -- It is just the start of the season. So we are going to see many more hot and humid days like today. But a Philadelphia emergency room doctor says this is a good time to get reacquainted with heat safety.
Dr. Michael DeAngelis, of Temple University Hospital, says every year, he sees a common pattern.
"The biggest mistake we see is people don't act quickly enough. By the time they get to emergency room, they're further along damage to organs," says Dr. DeAngelis.
Dr. DeAngelis says the first signs of heat stress are easy to pass off.
"People might start to feel generally fatigued, nauseous, they might develop cramps in their muscles," he says.
From there, heat stress can move into heat exhaustion and heat stroke quickly.
"If you have headaches, actual vomiting, if you start feeling more than just fatigued - actually stressed, you might be confused," says Dr. DeAngelis. But, "individuals might not actually see these signs as heat exhaustion."
Experts have simple reminders to get you heat ready:
* Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing
*Drink more fluids - stay away from alcohol and caffeinated beverages
(If you've got a soda habit, try to drink more water or diluted sports drinks)
*If you exercise, try to do early in the morning or in the evening when it is a bit cooler
*Listen to your body, you may need to drop your intensity
*Get into air conditioning. If you don't have it in your home, go to a shopping mall, senior center, or other cool place.
*ONLY use fans with the windows open. Open them in the front and back of your home to get the air moving
*Check on neighbors
The elderly, children, outdoor workers, the obese, and those with chronic medical conditions have the biggest chance of developing heat stress.
People who take certain medications, including beat blockers, attention deficit disorder medications, and diuretics are also more likely to get heat sick.
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