Our bodies get exhausted mostly when our body is warmed up and is unable to limber itself down. Heat exhaustion would probably happen commonly in summers or any hot weather. You might want to hydrate yourself because its symptoms consist of nausea, dizziness, and confusion. You can limber down your body by hydrating yourself or resting in a place with a cold environment. If not treated correctly, heat exhaustion will result in heatstroke, a fatal condition. Before knowing the preventive measures of heat exhaustion, let’s know more about heat exhaustion.
What Is Heat Exhaustion?
It mostly happens when your body gets warmed up to its maximum extent in humid or hot weather due to any physical activity. For example, while working out or doing any physical activity, our body tends to lose fluids via sweat. If you do not feel like replacing those fluids with water or any other liquid, you will get dehydrated, which would finally result in heat exhaustion. The symptoms might include dizziness, nausea, muscle cramps, etc.
Heat exhaustion and other kinds of heat-related conditions are very common (more than you think). For example, heat exhaustion recurrence is common in those people who roam outside the entire time or the people who play outside games, or the people who work out in the heat. The factors which influence this risky condition are as follows:
- Age: Elder people and small children are at the maximum risk of getting heat exhaustion. Older people and children are prone to heat exhaustion because older people (age 65 and more) and children (age less than 4) cannot regulate their body temperature. They also get dehydrated easily if they are not getting the required fluids.
- Usage Of Alcohol: Dehydration might be a result of having alcohol in large amounts. It increases the threat of heat exhaustion as well as makes you unable to control your body temperature.
- Lifestyle: Working out or playing in a hot environment will make you prone to dehydration. People who are not habitual of working out in warm temperatures will put you at risk of heat exhaustion. And the risk doubles when you wear tight or heavy clothing or use heavy equipment.
- Weight And Overall Health: Bulky people have a high possibility of having heat exhaustion. Conditions like obesity, diabetes, or heart diseases will double the risk of it.
Its symptoms do not happen all of a sudden; it takes up a little bit of time. Heat cramps or red rash along with muscle cramps are more likely to occur before the main symptoms. These cramps are so painful that they might affect the muscles in our body. The cramps mostly occur in the arms or legs. The main symptoms include:
- Dizziness (blurry vision, headache, and light-headedness)
- Fever (temperature more than 100 degrees)
- Fatigue (fainting)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid or shallow breaths
- Sweating (cold, clammy hands with severe sweating)
- Swollen ankles or feet and hands
- Rapid heartbeats
- Low blood pressure
First Aid For Heat Exhaustion
If someone with you or you are getting the symptoms of heat exhaustion, you must not wait for anything. Follow these steps immediately:
- Limber Down: Go to a cool place as soon as possible, find a place with AC, or go to a place and take a cool shower. You can also take a towel or a handkerchief and soak it in chilled water and place that cold hanky or towel on that person’s forehead or back of the neck.
- Drink: Take tiny sips of water or any chilled sports drink with electrolytes. Drink tiny sips for almost an hour. And prevent caffeine and alcohol at all costs as it would further cause dehydration.
- Rest: Stop doing everything immediately when you start experiencing any of the symptoms. Make sure you sit down or lie down if you start experiencing any of the symptoms.
- Look For Help If Things Get Nasty: Even after an hour, if things do not get better, you must call the ambulance, emergency room, or 911.
Prevention Of Heat Exhaustion
- Prevent Overheating: If you are working out or doing any physical activity during hot weather, make sure you wear loose clothing. Sit in the shade more often. And don’t forget to wear a hat with a brim.
- Consume Fluids: Make sure you drink water or any sports beverage every half an hour or so. Please do not wait to get thirsty. By drinking water, you will lessen your possibility of getting tired because you will be making sure that your body is not running out of the fluids it requires.
- Know Your Threats: If you consume the prescribed diuretics or any other medications which might lead you to dehydration, make sure you have a conversation with your doctor regarding taking additional precautions in the heat. If you had any heat-related conditions before, you might be prone to get exhausted by heat again.
- Exercise During Cooler Temperatures: Make sure you schedule your workout either early in the morning or in the evenings as the temperature is cold at that time.
Heat exhaustion is a very severe illness. If it is left untreated, it might create serious health problems that will be proved fatal. If your child has symptoms of heat exhaustion, it is crucial to treat it right away by resting and drinking plenty of water or getting immediate help. Make sure you listen to your body and give it some time to rest after doing any physical activity in the heat.