Anyone who spends time outdoors during the heat of summer must be aware of the dangers of heatstroke. The condition occurs when you are exposed to high temps for long periods of time. It can result in heart, brain, kidney and muscle damage if it’s left untreated, making it pretty important to know what the signals are so that you can get help if needed. Experts say that if you suspect heat stroke, you should head to the emergency room right away. Heat stroke can kill you, so it’s nothing to take lightly.
1. Your Body Temperature Soars
Chances are you’ll know if you have a fever even without a thermometer. With heatstroke, your internal temp will rise above 104 degrees. If you’ve been out in the heat being active and feel as if you have a fever, you might have heat stroke. Now is the time to call 911 or head to the emergency room right away.
2. You Might Feel like You Need to Vomit
When you have heat stroke, you’ll probably feel like you need to throw up. That feeling on its own doesn’t necessarily mean that you have heat stroke. However, if you also have any of the other symptoms of the condition, you should definitely get checked out by a doctor. Nausea and vomiting can get worse as heat stroke progresses so stop things in their tracks with early intervention.
3. You’ll Probably Feel like You Can’t Catch Your Breath
If you notice rapid, shallow breathing after prolonged exposure to high temps, you should be worried. Actually, anytime you experience changes to your breathing or can’t catch your breath, you should head to the ER. Heat stroke affects your internal organs so if you can’t breathe, chances are that there is damage happening inside your body.
4. Your Head Will Be Throbbing
Nothing is worse than a really bad headache and it’s one of the telltale signs of heat stroke. A sudden headache is cause for worry, but if you have any of these other symptoms along with your throbbing headache, have yourself checked by a doctor to be on the safe side.
5. Weird Sweating Patterns
You might be surprised to find out that when you have heat stroke, you won’t necessarily sweat. If you’ve been out in the heat for a long time, your skin will be hot to the touch, but will be dry. If you’re suffering heat stroke as a result of exercise, your skin will be moist to the touch. If you notice any changes to your usual pattern of sweating, take a break and assess yourself for heat stroke.
6. Your Heart is Racing
A racing heart could indicate many health issues, but if it comes along with any of these other signs of heat stroke, you could be in trouble and should head to the emergency room right away. Your racing heart could be due to the internal effects of heat stroke.
7. You Are Confused or Have a Change in Behavior
Heat stroke messes with your usual brain activity, which can result in confusion. It can also cause irritability, slurred speech, agitation and delirium. At this point, you are in serious danger, health wise, so call 911 immediately.
Have you ever had heat stroke? I hope this list keeps you safe all summer long. Do you have any other tips for summer safety?