Most of you know about heat stroke and also may have encountered with the traumatic experience. Usually when you go outside in summer season or when the sun is too harsh, your body is continuously exposed to the strong heat waves due to which your body is not able to regulate the normal temperature causing complications.
The term Heat Stroke is a heat-related illness caused by overheating of the body, usually as a result of continuous exposure to high temperature. Medically Heat Stroke is defined as a sudden increase in the core body temperature greater than 104 Degrees Fahrenheit, and as a result causing complications in the central nervous system.
Heat Stroke mainly affects people with age 50 and above. The young healthy athletes are also susceptible to sunstroke and it is most common in summer months when the sun rays strike the earth surface at a steep angle which increases the amount of energy incident on any given spot.
If you find anyone susceptible to heat stroke or sunstroke immediately call for help and give the patient First Aid until the help arrives. Heatstroke may be fatal if proper care is not taken.
WHAT IS SUNSTROKE?
Heat/Sun Stroke is a type of heat-related illness in which the body temperature elevates abnormally, including consequences like complication in the central nervous system.
Biologically the body generates heat as an outcome of metabolism (breaking of food) which is generally radiated out from the skin. But under the conditions of high temperature, high humidity and various physical endeavor in the sun, the body faces difficulty in radiating the heat. Thus the body temperature goes on increasing.
TYPES OF HEAT STOKE
Generally, heatstroke is divided into
EXERTIONAL HEAT STROKE It is caused due to overexertion in the hot temperature. Exertional heat stroke is mostly experienced by the athletes practicing or any labor doing his/her job under direct sunlight. In these circumstances, the human body is not able to radiate the heat out due to the high temperature outside.
NONEXERTIONAL HEAT STROKE It is caused in extreme climate especially in the summer season when the temperature is high. Avoid sitting in a closed room with poor ventilation during summers. Always avoid working in direct sunlight in such conditions unless it is extremely necessary.
SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS OF SUN/HEAT STROKE
Prior to sunstroke your may experience many indications which may include extreme tiredness, facing difficulties while urinating. Body temperature above 104 degrees Fahrenheit is the trademark sign of sunstroke. But the researchers say that fainting is the 1St sign of heatstroke.
The other symptoms may include
1) Nausea and vomiting. 2) Pulsating headache. 3) Weakness. 4) Fatigue. 5) No sweating or lack of sweating. 6) Muscles pain. 7) Fainting. 8) Flushed skin. 9) Increased heart rate. 10) Rapid breathing.
The symptoms may vary from person to person. This may include
1) Strange or alteration in behavior. 2) Confusions. 3) Coma. 4) Red, hot and dry skin. 5) Seizures. 6) High body temperature. 7) Dizziness.
SOULS AT RISK ARE?
Individuals of distinct ages are susceptible to heatstroke at different degrees 1) Infants- they are at high risk because their body is not ready or is underdeveloped to cope with such harsh conditions 2) Children exposed to continuous high temperature. 3) Athletes – because of their exertional practice under the sun during extreme hot climates. 4) Children, infants, pets or adults who accidentally gets locked in the car. 5) Individuals who work outside under the burning sun. 6) Individuals working in coal mines are also susceptible to heatstroke. 7) For a diabetic patient, heatstroke may prove fatal.
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF PARENTS/GUARDIANS IN PREVENTING THEIR CHILDREN FROM HEAT STROKE?
Being a parent comes up with lots of duties, responsibilities, and sometimes hardship. Parenting sometimes may become irritating as one has to continuously look around the child and bear their stubbornness. But still keeping all their work aside parent gives all their attention and invest all energy on the child. Sometimes it happens that parents leave their child with toys and gets busy in some work, this is the time when children do something messy that does not end well. As a parent, you should never leave your child, pet in an unattended locked car, because these may result in heat injury. The heat inside the car may rise to dangerous levels even in moderate temperature, which results in an increase in the body temperature. Parents should always keep their car locked when not in use so that children are not able to enter the car. As a parent, you should also not allow your kid to play for too long under the sun in the summer months and make sure that their kid is not exposed to high temperature for too long.
FIRST AID FOR HEAT STROKE
If you find anyone susceptible to sunstroke Immediately call an ambulance until the help arrives give initial first aid to the patient. Make sure that the patient is moved to a cool shady area and any unnecessary clothing is removed. Try to make the patient drink water and cool his body by using a fan or some other means. You should try every possible way to make the patient comfortable and bring him back to his senses.
WAYS TO COOL THE PATIENT
If you encounter a situation where the body temperature of a patient needs to be lowered by some means then you must try the below-given ways to cool the patient body
- Place ICE BAGS in the areas which have a rich supply of blood through blood vessels i.e., under the armpits, neck, and back.
- Dip the patient in a cool water bathtub.
- Make the patient stand under a shower.
- Wipe the patient body with a wet napkin.
NOTE- IT MAY BE DANGEROUS TO USE THE ICE FOR OLDER PATIENT AND FOR NON-EXERTIONAL HEAT STROKE, PEOPLE WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS.
RISK FACTOR FOR HEAT/SUNSTROKE
The high-risk groups susceptible to heatstroke include people who consume an excessive amount of alcohol. You should advise people to quit drinking by making them aware of the consequences otherwise they will have to face. And also those who do not drink enough amount of water which results in DEHYDRATION and ends up getting heatstroke. You should at least drink 8-9 glass of water in a day.
Old people living in apartments or houses with poor ventilation may suffer from severe heatstroke. The temperature of the room may rise to dangerous levels increasing the temperature levels of the body. Thus you should take care that every room is properly ventilated making it more comfortable.
Athletes or people doing exertional work under the sun in extreme climate are also susceptible to heat-related issues. An Athlete or anyone doing any physical work must take rest in between ad take lots of fluids other than water to keep them hydrated and eliminating all the risks involved.
HOW HEAT STROKE TRIGGERS?
You must be aware of the various conditions that contribute to any type of heat-related injuries. So that you yourself and make others avoid those things. Heatstroke is related to heat index i.e., how hot an individual feels when air temperature and relative humidity combined. The human body cools itself by perspiration or sweating. Heat is removed from the body by evaporation of sweat. However, increased relative humidity results in lower evaporation rate thereby producing the sensation of heating and thus the body is not able to cool itself.
The stagnant atmospheric conditions and poor quality of air known as HEAR ISLAND EFFECT is prone to develop heatstroke.
HOW HEAT STROKE CAN BE PREVENTED?
When the heat index is above par i.e., above 90 degree Celsius or more, it increases the risk of heat-related illness. Thus it is best to be in a cool environment when the heat index is high. However, if going out is must then taking some steps may reduce the risk of heatstroke or heat-related illness.
1) Before going out applying sunscreen with sun protection factor 30 or more will help.
2) Drinking plenty of fluids such as water, juice, sports drink before performing any physical activities in hot weather. Avoid consuming alcohol and caffeine which may lead to dehydration. It is recommended to drink at least 8 to 9 glasses of water per day.
3) Wear light-colored and lightweight clothing and avoid any unnecessary clothing.
4) Your body needs lots of ions and electrolytes if you do vigorous activities under direct sunlight for long periods.
5) If your urine is darker which is a sign of dehydration, then make sure you drink enough to maintain the light-colored urine.
6) Avoid consuming beverages containing alcohol and caffeine because both can worsen the heat-related illness.
7) Try to maintain good ventilation in your house.
8) Keep your car locked while not in use so that children or pet cannot enter it and end themselves locking in the car.
9) If you take some medications to be alert because some of them affect your bodies ability to stay hydrated.
10) If possible reschedule your outdoor work too early morning or in the evening.
HOW HEAT STROKE IS DIAGNOSED?
Looking at the symptoms it is found whether the patient is diagnosed with heatstroke. But it is the doctor who usually confirms the diagnosis by a laboratory test, ruling out all other causes of symptoms.
The test includes
Blood test- to check the levels of salts i.e., sodium and potassium in your blood to confirm the proper functioning of CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.
Urine test- checking the color of urine gives us an idea about the proper functioning of the kidney. Dark-colored urine signifies that you may have a heat-related condition, as heat stroke affects the kidney.
X-RAY– imaging test is done to check for the damage of internal organ.
TREATMENT OF HEAT STROKE
The only thing doctors try while treating a patient against heatstroke is to cool and bring the core temperature of the patient body below 102 F or 39 degree Celsius. The ideal time being 60 minutes for bringing the core temperature to normal, but it should be done as fast as possible.
Nowadays the immediate treatment given to a patient susceptible to heatstroke is cooling the patient with cool water or wrapping them with a cool water-soaked blanket.
Doctors also prescribe BENZODIAZEPINE, also known as BENZOS, to prevent shivering. Also, the patients are hydrated with fluids. if cold water immersion is not available to cool the patient, then the evaporation technique is used over it in which cool water is misted on the patient and then warm air is fanned over the patient.
How To Avoid Pubic Infections In Summer
Summer season comes with hot and humid conditions. In summer the nitrogenous wastes like urea, ammonia, and salts from our body eliminate more through sweat as compared to urine. Sweat glands are located throughout our body under the epidermal layer of skin. So Wondering under the hot sun might make you sweat and sweating in the regions like pubic areas and other intimating areas. More heat and sweat in areas like armpits or private areas can result in fungal infections and sweating in such intimating areas cannot be avoided but its time for you to take extra cautions to avoid infections, itching or irritation and thus be free from such uncomfortable situations. Following are some tips that will help you in maintaining the hygiene of your private areas.
Avoid wearing tight clothes in the summer season as a lot of sweat is discharged when the sun is somewhat harsh on us and these conditions are favorable for bacterial/fungal growth leading to infections. Try to make a habit of keeping the private areas totally dry before wearing clothes after taking bath. You can also use antibacterial liquids to clean intimidate areas or apply antibacterial powder in such areas.
Try to keep genitals dry and avoid wearing tight underwear. Give yourself a break from silky and synthetic underwear as they retain moisture and switch to cotton undergarments.
If you suspect any type of genital infections it is advised to see a doctor rather than waiting for too long.