Do You Know the Difference Between Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion?
As summers continue to get hotter and hotter each year, and as more people decide to work and play outside, the incidents of heat stroke and heat exhaustion are becoming more prevalent. Do you know the key differences between heat exhaustion and heat stroke?
Heat Exhaustion comes from dehydration and can lead to the potentially fatal heat stroke. When you get too hot the body’s reaction is to sweat for temperature control. Not replenishing these lost fluids properly can lead to more extreme heat exhaustion or even heat stroke.
Signs of Heat Exhaustion
Pale moist cool skin
Rapid breathing, panting
If you suspect someone has heat exhaustion have them get into the shade or into an air conditioned location and elevate their feet a bit. Try to cool them down via cool compresses, especially on neck and armpits. Replenishing water without gorging is the key so have them drink Ã?Â½ cup water every 15 minutes. If they continue to show signs of heat exhaustion and aren’t improving, seek a doctor’s help.
Heat Stroke is where the body’s ability to cool itself by sweating is shut down. All temperature control is removed and the body overheats. Much like a car overheating the body can not work properly without a proper cooling system. Heat stroke can be fatal, and can make its sufferer slip into a coma if not treated speedily.
Signs of Heat Stroke
Dry hot red skin
No longer sweating
Rapid but shallow breathing
Rapid but weak pulse
If you suspect that someone has heat stroke and not just heat exhaustion, call 911 immediately. Start taking steps to prepare yourself to give CPR if needed. Follow the steps of treatment for heat exhaustion while the person is conscious and while you wait for emergency personnel to get there. Begin by having them get into the shade or into an air conditioned location and elevate their feet a bit. Try to cool them down via cool compresses on their neck and armpits. Replenish their lost water by having them drink Ã?Â½ cup water every 15 minutes.