As temperatures rise higher, so do the dangers of hot weather
Published Friday, July 19, 2019 3:39PM EDT
Record-breaking temperatures over the next several days can easily lead to a trip to the emergency department if you’re not careful.
Rick Walker from the Middlesex-London Health Unit says as the temperature continues to rise, so do the dangers.
“Weather can be extremely dangerous to the point that heat stroke can be lethal, and people have died from excessive heat.”
Walker says overheating, heat exhaustion and heat stroke can happen faster than people may think.
“We are an internal combustion engine just like an automobile, and just like a car can overheat so can our bodies...When it starts to get hotter, our ability to exhaust that heat is restricted - not only because we are generating more heat ourselves - but we are exposed to more heat so our bodies get overwhelmed.”
Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke and heat stroke can lead to brain and organ swelling and can have life-long effects
The health unit says most people don’t even realize they have heat exhaustion or heat stroke until it’s too late, so it’s important to keep an eye out for signs and symptoms.
“First symptoms people start to experience with exposure to heat is a little bit of lethargy and a some swelling around the ankles, fatigue and you feel that bogginess associated with it.”
Those are all signs to get out of the heat as soon as possible and find a place to cool down.
Walker adds being outside for more than one day in excessive heat can also add up.
“Recognize it’s not just today, it’s also tomorrow, so the heat you stress you expose yourself to today will be a heat debt by tomorrow. So you haven’t recovered fully by tomorrow and unless you accommodate for that you’re going to suffer the consequences.”