The Guide to Male Lifestyle in Las Vegas

How to Avoid Heat Stroke

July 3, 2013

Heat warnings are in effect throughout the valley this week, and will continue through the Fourth of July holiday tomorrow. Many of you will probably celebrate indoors this year, and that would be the wisest course. Others, bound by patriotic duty or just determined to see something explode, will still venture outdoors to see the fireworks displays. With temperatures predicted to hit 113° in the shade, there is a strong chance of contracting heat stroke. Know in advance what the symptoms of heat stroke are, and how to protect yourself.

According to WebMd.com, the symptoms of heat stroke may include one or more of the following:

  • Body temperature above 105°
  • Throbbing headache
  • Dizziness, light-headedness
  • Lack of sweat despite the heat
  • Red, dry skin
  • Muscle weakness or cramps
  • Nausea
  • Increased heart rate
  • Shallow breathing
  • Mental disorientation
  • Seizure
  • Unconsciousness

If you or someone with you begins to experience these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Move the person to an indoor environment. If such a place is out of range, move the person under a tree or to another shaded spot. Fan the person with air and hydrate them by rubbing them with cold water, submerging them in a cold bath, or helping them sit beneath a cold shower. Remove any unnecessary clothing.

After recovering, you will be extra heat sensitive for the next week. Avoid the sun and heavy exercise during that time.

Preventing Stroke

Avoid heat stroke by reminding yourself that direct sunlight increases the heat index by fifteen degrees. So when the temperature is 113° and you stand in the sun, you’re actually experiencing 128° heat. Seek the shade as often as possible. If you plan on watching fireworks from a crowded area, take an umbrella and wear loose clothing with long sleeves and full pants made of organic fibers such as cotton or linen. Limit your exposure to direct sunlight as much as possible. Wear sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more.

Drink plenty of water; if heading to a park for an hour or more, stay hydrated by taking a gallon jug of cool water with you in a cooler with ice packs. Wrap the ice packs in towels and place them on your skin at various points, especially the back of the neck and the middle of your chest. Avoid drinking alcohol, which dehydrates the body and raises blood pressure as well as body temperature. Because heat stroke can also deplete the body’s salt levels, drinking Gatorade may be better than water.

Plan to be late. Though you may be tempted to beat the crowds in order to claim the best viewing spot, leaving as late in the day as possible is wiser. As the sun goes down you’ll limit your exposure to direct sunlight. However, the temperature is unlikely to dip below 100° even after nightfall, so continue to maintain vigilance against heat stroke signs and symptoms.

Happy Fourth of July from Las Vegas Man Blog, and stay safe.

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