Drink Cool (not icy cold) Fluids
•Active people should drink 2-4 glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool, non-alcoholic fluids every hour. Drinking water is best.
•Do not take salt tablets without a physician’s advice.
•Avoid beverages that contain alcohol or caffeine, because they can add to dehydration and increase the effects of heat illnesses.
Monitor or Limit
•Young children may become preoccupied with outdoor play and not realize they are overheated. Adults should mandate frequent breaks and bring children indoors to cool down and have cool drinks.
•Children or adolescents involved in team sports should be closely monitored for signs of heat stress. Consideration should be given to modifying practice or games during the hottest parts of the day.
Know How to Treat
•Symptoms of heat exhaustion include: heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness,
dizziness, headache, nausea or fainting.
•People experiencing these symptoms should be moved to a shady or air-conditioned area. Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet clothes or towels.
•Have person sip on a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes. If the person refuses water, vomits or loses consciousness, call 911 or the local emergency number.
Know How to Treat Heat Stroke
•Heat stroke is a life-threatening situation. Call 911 immediately. Symptoms include: a body temperature of 103 degrees or higher, red, hot and dry skin with no sweating, rapid pulse, headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, unconsciousness, and gray skin color.
•Before medical help arrives, begin cooling the person by any means possible, such as spraying person with water from a garden hose or by placing the person in a cool tub of water.
NEVER Leave Children
or Pets in Vehicles
•Even in cool temperatures, cars can heat up to dangerous temperatures quickly. Even if the windows are cracked open, interior temperatures can rise almost 20 degrees within the first 10 minutes.
•Children or animals left inside a vehicle is at risk for serious heat-related illnesses or even death.
•When traveling with children (even routine drives), remember to do the following:
~To remind yourself that a child is in the car, place bags, phones or other items you will take with you in the back seat. This will force you to turn around before exiting the car.
~When leaving your vehicle, check the front and back seats to make sure no sleeping children (or pets) are left in the car.
Handling Your Emotions During the Heat Wave and Power Outage
•Realize that it is normal to have strong emotions when faced with extreme stress—and this is extreme stress.
You are not alone.
•Acknowledge the stress that others around you are experiencing, too. They are going through the same things that you are.
•There are things that you can control and things that you can’t. If you focus on dealing with those you can control, you will be in better control and feel better.
•Help your neighbors—helping others is one of the best ways to help yourself.
•Stick to as much of your normal routine as possible. This is especially important for children.
•Don’t be afraid to ask for help and accept help when offered. Many of us pride ourselves on being able to take care of things ourselves. Asking for help when you need it is a sign of strength—not a sign of weakness.
•Take care of yourself as best you can:
Go to cool places during the hottest parts of the days:
•Other places that are cool or have air conditioning
•Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid alcohol. Alcohol will dehydrate you and will make you more emotional. You don’t need that and neither does your family or others around you.
•Take cool baths. This helps regulate your temperature and helps you relax a little.
•Even if your refrigerator is out, you do need to eat well and regularly.
•Don’t argue—it will just make you hotter and won’t help anything.
•If you really feel out of control, contact your local mental health providers. Remember that feeling suicidal or wanting to harm others is NEVER normal and you should get help.
Most importantly, keep in mind that this will end. If you look at your life, you will find many stressful times that you have gotten through.
With help and patience, you will get through this, too.