Temperatures are expected to soar into the triple digits over the weekend in Oklahoma. EMSA officials are urging Oklahomans to take extra safety precautions.
On Friday, paramedics have already responded to five heat-related emergencies by 1 p.m. This “Heat Alert”, in Day 4, has produced 21 patients, EMSA Spokesperson Lara O'Leary said.
Officials offer the following tips on how to stay safe in the heat:
· Take frequent breaks doing outdoor activity.
· Avoid hot foods and heavy meals—they add heat to your body.
· Drink plenty of fluids and replace salts and minerals in your body. Do not take salt tablets unless under medical supervision.
· Dress infants and children in cool, loose light colored clothing and shade their heads and faces with hats or an umbrella.
· Limit sun exposure during mid-day hours.
· Provide plenty of fresh water for your pets, and leave the water in a shady area.
Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids. It is the body's response to an excessive loss of the water and salt contained in sweat. Those most prone to heat exhaustion are elderly people, people with high blood pressure, and people working or exercising in a hot environment.
Recognizing Heat Exhaustion
Warning signs of heat exhaustion include the following:
· Heavy sweating
· Muscle cramps
· Nausea or vomiting
The skin may be cool and moist. The victim's pulse rate will be fast and weak, and breathing will be fast and shallow. If heat exhaustion is untreated, it may progress to heat stroke. Seek medical attention immediately if any of the following occurs:
· Symptoms are severe
· The victim has heart problems or high blood pressure