Heat Illness
3 May 2016

Heat Emergencies – first aid and awareness

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Heat Emergencies – first aid and awareness

As the warmer months approach we often don’t realize that our bodies take some time to get used to the nice temperatures. In Alberta let’s face it we live in the land of extremes – we worry about hypothermia in the winter and heat stroke in the summer.

 

When it comes to heat related illness we often think – it’s just older people and little kids – but the truth of the matter is everyone can be affected. So here’s some tips to avoid heat related illness and also what to look for in your family, friends and co-workers.

Heat Cramps 

So if you think about heat illnesses and a marathon runner – at the pit stop a runner stretches their muscles – doing lunges, rubbing their thigh and calf muscles – and most importantly – drinking lots of water. By doing this they are stopping heat cramps before they start. The cramping of muscles is your body’s way of alerting you to de-hydration – so listen to it and enjoy the rest of the race – or what ever activity you are doing. If you choose not to listen to this warning well you will progress to

 

Heat Exhaustion 

At this point your body is breaking down and you are going into shock, along with the cramps you will feel tired – you will be sweating profusely and your skin will be red – but if someone touches you – you may feel cold. Again drinking lots of water – getting out of the heat and spending the rest of the day relaxing is the remedy for this, however if once again you choose to ignore your body’s warning signs well it will progress into what can be a deadly situation…

Heat Stroke 

Well, now you are in a really bad situation, you have cramps, you are no longer sweating – this may seem good but it’s not – you’ve boiled yourself dry, you are nauseous and vomiting – you now need IV fluids and to be immersed up to your chin in cold water – and you need emergency medical care.

 

Lets all keep an eye on each other out there, heat related illnesses can sneak up on you so watch how you feel – take breaks in the shade and drink lots of cool water and sports drinks – it could be the difference in enjoying your summer day and ending up at the hospital.

 

For more information – come visit us and take a first aid course – we have all levels and even welcome kids under 12!