It’s going to be hot this weekend, Whatcom. Forecasts predict temperatures reaching into the 100s in parts of Whatcom County. Make sure you’re able to stay cool this weekend. Heat-related illness is one of the biggest weather-related killers in this country. Thankfully, heat-related illness is preventable.
Stay Cool and Hydrated to Prevent Heat Illness
Take the following precautions to make sure you and those close to you don’t get a heat-related illness.
We’ve all heard that an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. And it’s true! But if prevention fails, it’s important to know what the cure is. There are a number of critical steps you can take if you can recognize the signs of heat illness.
Know The Signs of Heat-Related Illness
Did you know that sunburn is a heat-related illness? That’s right. But there are more serious heat-related illnesses to be aware of, including:
If you’re experiencing heat cramps or heat exhaustion, you may need medical attention. If you’re experiencing heat stroke, you must get help right away. Delay may be fatal.
When to Seek Help and What to Do If You’re in Trouble
If you think someone may be experiencing heat stroke, call 911 immediately. Do not delay. Their life is in danger. After you’ve called 911, move the person to a cooler place, preferably with air conditioning. Use cool, wet cloths to cool them down, or place them in a cool bath. Do not give them anything to drink.
You may need to seek medical attention if you or someone else is experiencing heat exhaustion or heat cramps too.
Seek medical attention for heat exhaustion if:
If you or someone else is showing signs of heat exhaustion, move to a cooler place, preferably with air conditioning. Loosen clothes and use cool, wet cloths to cool down, or sit in a cool bath. Sip water. Heavy sweating can eliminate critical salts and minerals your body needs, so make sure you’re replacing these too. You can replace salts by drinking a sports drink, such as Gatorade or Powerade.
Seek medical attention for heat cramps if:
Heat cramps may be relieved by gently massaging or applying firm pressure on the cramping muscles. Drink water in sips unless you feel nauseous. If you feel nauseous, stop drinking water.
You can stay up-to-date on local weather conditions and temperature forecasts by following the National Weather Service. The CDC is a great resource for information about heat illness and heat illness prevention. DOH has more information for tips to stay safe in hot weather.