National Weather Service shares tips for surviving extreme heat
SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - With a heat wave approaching and some people still without power after the damaging June 16 storm, the National Weather Service shares how to survive extreme heat.
On June 23, the National Weather Service Shreveport (NWS) speaks with KSLA to share tips about surviving intense heat waves.
Heat is one of the leading weather-related killers in the U.S. according to the NWS website. First, be aware of the signs of heat-related illness then follow steps to help reduce the symptoms.
Heat cramps are often the first sign of heat-related illness, and could lead to something much worse. It starts with painful muscle cramps and spasms that usually happen in the legs and abdomen, as well as heavy sweating. Make sure to apply firm pressure and massage the cramping area. Have the person drink water but stop if the person feels nauseous.
Heat exhaustion symptoms include dizziness, thirst, heavy sweating, nausea, weakness, muscle cramps, and weak/fast pulse. The person’s skin can be cool, clammy, and pale. You can help combat heat exhaustion by moving to a cooler area, loosening clothing, and sipping cool water. If none of these things work, seek medical help.
Heat stroke is much more dangerous. Its symptoms include confusion, dizziness, throbbing headache, fainting, fainting, loss of consciousness, and a body temperature above 103°F. They will appear red, dry, or damp, and have a rapid strong pulse. Act immediately and call 911, move the person to a cooler area, loosen clothing and remove any extra layers, and cool with ice or water. You can also use a cool cloth or bath to help cool the person off. Do NOT give the person fluids.
Avoid all of these by staying in the shade, staying hydrated, and limiting physical activity.
Who is most susceptible to heat-related illnesses?
- Young children and infants are very vulnerable to heat-related illness and death. Their bodies are less able to adapt to heat than are adults.
- Older adults, especially those with pre-existing diseases, who take certain medications, are living alone, or with limited mobility and are exposed to extreme heat can experience multiple adverse effects.
- People with chronic medical conditions are more likely to have serious health problems during a heat wave than healthy people.
- Pregnant women are also at higher risk. Extreme heat events have been associated with adverse birth outcomes such as low birth weight, preterm birth, and infant mortality, as well as congenital cataracts.
You can find more information and resources by visiting https://www.heat.gov/.
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