Fort Bend County Health & Human Services provides heat safety tips

9 06 2011

No rain in our area.  Hot windy conditions on a daily basis.  Drought conditions persisting week after week.  Not the normal May and June we are accustomed to in Fort Bend County.  Summer has started early in Fort Bend County in 2011.  And looking at the forecast for the next week—- no relief in sight.  However, below, please review the hints below, provided by our County public health officials, on how to better cope with the extreme heat conditions facing us.

With extreme heat arriving early this summer, Fort Bend County Health & Human Services would like to remind everyone to take precautions and be safe outdoors.  Symptoms of heat related illness include high body temperature, confusion, nausea, and headache.  If you experience these symptoms move to a cool area, take a cool shower, and drink plenty of water.  Know the illnesses caused by extreme heat:

• Heat Stroke-the most serious heat-related disorder. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature: the body’s temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down.

• Heat Exhaustion-Heat exhaustion is the body’s response to an excessive loss of the water and salt, usually through excessive sweating.

• Heat Syncope- fainting (syncope) episode or dizziness that usually occurs with prolonged standing or sudden rising from a sitting or lying position.

• Heat Rash-skin irritation caused by excessive sweating during hot, humid weather.

To prevent extreme heat illness use these tips:

• Drink plenty of fluids, but avoid drinks with alcohol, caffeine or a lot of sugar. Don’t wait until you are thirsty. Start drinking fluids 30 minutes before going out.

• Plan strenuous outdoor activity for early morning or evening when the temperature is lower.

• Take frequent breaks when working outside.

• Wear sunscreen SPF 15 or higher, wide-brimmed hats and light-colored, loose-fitting clothes.

• Check with a doctor about the effects of sun and heat when taking prescription drugs, especially diuretics or antihistamines.

• Dress infants and children in cool, loose clothing. Shade their heads and faces with hats or an umbrella.

• Check frequently on the elderly and others who made need help.

• Never leave anyone or pets in a closed, parked vehicle in hot weather.

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2 responses

9 06 2011
Bob Gaffney

Great timing and good advice. I’m going to share this information with our Occupational Health people out here to see what we can post for our employees to take proper precautions. They’ve already asked about putting a heat warning out but we’re tied to the NWS system that requires a heat index of 108 for three days, or something similar. I think we can put something out before then.

Good information, Jeff. Thank you.

9 06 2011
Jeff Braun

Very cool; no pun intended! I will pass on your compliments to our Health Department PIO who wrote the information.

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