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Soaring Temps Require Extra Hydration and Awareness of Potential Heat-Related Dangers


“These high temperatures create dangerous conditions for children and adults alike,” said Anna Richie, MD, and clinical director of urgent care for Memorial Care. “For those who have to be outdoors, it is vital to drink plenty of liquids, take indoor breaks when possible and pay attention to signs of heat-related illness.”

Symptoms to watch for include:

  • Dizziness
  • Excessive sweating
  • A fast or faint pulse
  • Muscle cramps
  • Clammy or cold skin
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache

The average adult requires at least ten cups of fluids (preferably water) daily just to keep the body running smoothly and replace fluids throughout the day. That number increases when the temperatures rise. It is also important not to rely on caffeinated beverages as your main source of fluids. Avoid alcoholic beverages since alcohol makes your body lose water.

For outdoor workers, it is important to acclimate using shorter shifts until the body adjusts to the heat, stay well hydrated, take frequent rest and hydration breaks in shade and designate a buddy to watch for signs of heat-related illness.

“Take the heat warnings seriously,” said Dr. Richie. “If you can avoid being outside between noon and 4 p.m., do it. Heat is a leading weather-related killer in the United States and can also cause cramps, exhaustion, rash and even stroke in some people.”