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Vital S: Surviving Summer

 

Summer is just around the corner and it is usually the time for outdoor fun, but it’s also when we have to be careful with the hot weather.

 

Heat-related illnesses strike when the body is unable to regulate its temperature and cannot properly cool itself by sweating alone.

 

Heat can be deadly. Thousands of deaths occur annually from exposure to extreme heat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

Heat illnesses can come in many forms:

HEAT SYNCOPE is a fainting episode that usually happens during physical activity in a hot environment. Symptoms include light-headedness, dizziness, and fainting.

 

HEAT CRAMPS are muscular cramps that affect people who sweat a lot during strenuous activities. The low electrolyte levels as a result of sweating cause the painful muscle cramps usually in the legs. Symptoms include muscle pain or spasms usually in the hands, arms, legs, and abdomen.

 

HEAT EXHAUSTION is the body’s response to loss of water and sweat, usually through excessive sweating. Symptoms include heavy sweating, extreme weakness and fatigue, dizziness, and clammy skin.

 

HEAT STROKE is a medical emergency when body temperature is over 40 degrees celsius orally. Symptoms include confusion and dizziness, hallucinations, throbbing headaches, and chills. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency medical treatment is not given.

 

Although anyone can suffer from a heat-related illness, young children, older adults, and people with chronic medical conditions are especially at risk. Infants’ systems are not as developed, so they don’t have the same ability to control their temperatures as adults do. On the other hand, elderly people are easily susceptible to dehydration. Hence they are also at a greater risk of getting heat-related illnesses.

 

Some general tips on preventing heat-related illnesses are:

 

• Drink plenty of cool fluids, the non-alcoholic and non-caffeinated type;

• Apply topical sunblock or sunscreen if planning to stay outdoors for a prolonged period of time;

• Wear light clothing that allows evaporation and heat dissipation;

• Schedule outdoor activities during the coolest time of the day, avoid the 11 am to 3 pm time frame;

• Finally, don’t do anything physically strenuous while alone in the heat, always have a companion or buddy.

 

Summer time can be extremely fun, just remember to take extra precaution to prevent heat related illnesses.

ActiveOne Health

 

Head Office:

9th Floor 88 Corporate Center
141 Sedeno corner Valero Streets
Salcedo Village, Makati City 1227
Tel: +632-893 2925 / 817 7372 /
         856 7939 to 40
 

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Ground Floor, EDY Building,
No. 144 Kisad Road, Baguio City 2600
Tel: +63 74 442 1439

Cebu Office:

Suite 301-C, Medalle Building,
Osmeña Boulevard, Cebu City 6000
Telefax: +63 32 236 6986
 

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