When the temperatures soar into the triple digits, you know that you need to take it easy, but how do you know when you can keep going a few minutes longer, or when you need to call it quits and seek the shade? In this oppressive heat, you need to know the early warning signs of heat stroke, so you can get out of the hot weather and take steps to protect yourself.
Heat stroke is a serious danger, and it is not something you should ignore. If you experience any of these heat stroke warning signs, you need to seek help right away.
• Dizziness and confusion – If you suddenly feel dizzy or experience feelings of confusion, you could be experiencing the early states of heat stroke. The excessive heat takes a toll on your entire body, including your brain.
• A throbbing headache – Headaches are a common sign of heat stroke, and often this kind of pain is the first symptom. If it is hot out and you experience a sudden headache, it is time to head for the nearest air conditioner.
• Muscle cramps – The sudden appearance of muscle cramps is another early sign of heat stroke, and another one you should not ignore. These muscle cramps can happen when you are working in the hot sun, or even when you are sitting still.
• A lack of sweating – When you are working in the heat, sweating is normal, and you should be concerned if the sweating stops. Sweat is your body’s way of cooling itself off, and when you are unable to sweat, your body temperature could quickly reach dangerous levels.
• Shallow breathing – As heat stroke progresses, you may experience rapid shallow breathing, with can lead to shortness of breath. You need to seek medical help right away if you experience this serious symptom of heat stroke.
• Rapid heartbeat – If you are experiencing heat stroke, you might notice that your heart is beating faster than it should. Rapid heartbeat is one of the most serous signs of heat stroke, and it is one you should never ignore.
Working outside in the summer sun can be wonderful, but it is important to know when enough is enough. If triple digits are in the forecast, you need to pace yourself, limiting the amount of time you spend outside, drinking plenty of fluids, and seeking the shade, or the nearest air conditioned room, when you start to feel too hot.
If you experience any of the heat stroke symptoms listed above, it is important to seek help right away. Heat stroke can be very dangerous, and delaying treatment could have serious consequences.