3 Times You Are Most Likely to Get Heatstroke

It’s summer, and even our best efforts to stay safe in the sun are not always enough to protect us from the dangerous consequences of heatstroke.

What is heatstroke?

Heatstroke is a serious condition that occurs when our body’s temperature rises over 103 degrees Fahrenheit. It is usually the result of overexerting yourself in extreme heat and is an emergency. “With heat stroke, the body tries to lower its internal temperature by systematically shutting down organs to protect the heart and brain,” explains cardiologist Paula Montana De La Cadena, MD.

Early signs of heatstroke can include hot, red skin, dizziness, nausea, confusion, and passing out. “The abnormal mental state might manifest as confusion, disorientation, impaired judgment, abnormal motor coordination, seizures, or loss of consciousness,” says David Geier, MD, orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist.

According to a study in Injury Epidemiology, each year there are about 4,100 emergency department visits for heatstroke in the United States. Heatstroke is serious and usually results in an admission to stay overnight at the hospital. Unlike heat exhaustion which can be treated by getting out of the heat and drinking cool water, heatstroke should never be treated at home.

“Untreated heatstroke can cause serious damage to the brain, heart, kidneys, and muscles and can even lead to death the longer treatment is delayed,” warns Dr. Montana De La Cadena. To help prevent heatstroke, be aware of when you’re at risk, such as in these scenarios.

Pushing yourself in sports

Exerting yourself in extreme heat is a recipe for heatstroke. This can happen to athletes who practice outside in the summer months. “In sports, especially football, heatstroke events usually occur in July and August, when the heat and humidity are at their highest points for the year, and the athletes have not acclimatized to these conditions,” says Dr. Geier.

Working outdoors

If you find yourself working outdoors this summer, stay mindful of taking breaks and drinking cold water. Anyone who does physical work such as farming, moving heavy equipment or construction work is at risk of dehydration and heatstroke.

Becoming dehydrated

People who are more at risk of becoming dehydrated, like children or the elderly, are more at risk for heatstroke as well. If you have been diagnosed with a heart or liver condition, limit your time in the heat and always keep a water bottle with you. “For these groups, the process of dehydration occurs much faster, as the body’s compensatory measures don’t work as efficiently,” says Dr. Montana De La Cadena.

Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp
Pinterest
Reddit
Delicious
LinkedIn
Facebook
Twitter
WhatsApp

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

READ NEXT

8 Foods That Are Healthier Than You Thought

You will be surprised to see how many foods are actually healthy for you, despite of their myths and rumors. For example, spaghetti and meatballs is a great choice to

8 Dangerous Viruses That Can Cause Cancer

Viruses are tiny, infectious microbes. They’re technically parasites because they require a host cell to reproduce. Upon entry, the virus uses components of the host cell to complete its life

How to Make Water Taste Better (6 Ways)

Everyone knows they need to drink more water, but glass after glass of plain H2O can get boring. Flavored water alternatives, though, may not be worth it: There’s little or

6 Bad Habits That Are Damaging Your Brain

Many of us fall into a trap of bad habits that are damaging our brain. You should take care of an essential part of your body—YOUR BRAIN. Almost everything you

These Are the Worst Habits for Your Heart

The heart is one of the most important organs in our bodies. It pumps blood to deliver the needed oxygen and nutrients to the cells and tissues. As you probably

8 Easy Tips to Make Your Coffee Super Healthy

Many scientists believe that coffee is one of the healthiest beverages in the world. For some people, it’s the single largest source of antioxidants in their diet, outranking both fruits

6 Surprising Health Benefits of Eating Watermelon

Watermelon is not just water and sugar—it is nutrient dense food. This delicious fruit provides high levels of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and just a small number of calories. Also,

8 Things That Can Damage Your Liver

Most people associate alcohol abuse with damage to the liver, but other factors can also play a role. These are the health conditions, drugs, and lifestyle habits that can cause

5 Reasons You Have Swollen Fingers

You have arthritis pain, and the inflammation in your joints causes your fingers to swell up and resemble little sausages. Or maybe you’ve chowed down a salty meal, and now

Scroll to Top