Heatstroke occurs when the body can no longer regulate its temperature, and it begins to rise. It usually happens after long exposure to high temperatures or after physical exertion in high temperatures.
It is more common during the summer months and can occur if the body temperature reaches or exceeds 104 °F (40 °C).
Heatstroke should be treated in the emergency room, as it can cause severe damage to muscles and vital organs.
Symptoms of heatstroke
One of the signs of heatstroke or heatstroke is an increase in body temperature (+40 °C or 104 °F).
Other symptoms are:
Nausea and vomiting
Anyone can get Heatstroke, but some factors increase the risk:
Age, children, and adults over 65 years old are at higher risk:
Children and older adults have a central nervous system that is less resistant to temperature changes. Additionally, both groups may have difficulties in staying hydrated, which increases the risk of experiencing the negative effects of intense heat
Engaging in sports or physical exertion during the hottest time of the day
Sudden exposure to high temperatures
Lack of adequate ventilation at home or in the workplace
Certain chronic illnesses (such as heart or lung conditions)
It is important to exercise caution with medications that affect the body's ability to stay hydrated and regulate temperature in hot climates. Examples include vasoconstriction medications, beta-blockers that block adrenaline, diuretics that promote the elimination of sodium and water, as well as antidepressants or antipsychotics. Additionally, stimulants used for conditions like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), as well as illegal drugs like amphetamines and cocaine, can also increase vulnerability to heatstroke. It is important to consider these factors when taking care of your health in hot weather
How can we prevent Heatstroke?
Heatstroke can be avoided by taking certain measures during times of intense heat:
Wear lightweight clothing.
Never leave yourself or someone else in a parked car in the sun (the temperature inside a car can increase by 11 °C or 20 °F in just 10 minutes).
Acclimatize and limit time spent working or exercising in hot conditions until you have adapted.
Take precautionary measures if you are at higher risk. If you are receiving medical treatment for a condition that increases the risk of heat-related complications, it is recommended to avoid exposure. If you are participating in a sports activity or strenuous event in high-temperature conditions, ensure that medical services are available in case of an emergency.
How to recover from a Heatstroke?
If you think that you or someone is suffering from Heatstroke, the ideal is to go to the emergency room, meanwhile, place the person in a cool place and remove bulky or hot clothing and spray cool water on the neck, face, when professional help arrives.
Immediate treatment of heatstroke is crucial. If not addressed promptly, this condition can cause severe damage to vital organs such as the brain, heart, kidneys, and muscles. It is crucial to act quickly, as a delay in treatment increases the risk of serious complications.
Call emergency services and minimize the consequences of heatstroke.
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