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After Daughter Gets Heatstroke in her Bedroom, Mom Warns of Danger

When people you know say that they are extremely hot or can’t take the heat anymore, it’s no laughing matter. Before the hottest summer months usually start, the number of people dying from heatstroke is already usually in the double digits. As the summer gradually progresses, the forecasted number jumps up to even higher with the average number succumbing to heatstroke being around 38 children under age 15 per year. (1)

In 2017, single mother Jennifer Amba said her daughter had developed severe heatstroke even from the confines of her own bedroom. Her daughter was simply taking a nap and when Jennifer went into the room to check up on her. She found her covered in sweat with a red face, and unresponsive. Since 1998 alone, 815 children have died due to Pediatric Vehicular Heatstroke (PVH), and it has been stated that all of the deaths could’ve been prevented. (2)

Dynamics Of Heatstroke

In a nutshell, heatstroke is what happens to your body when you are exposed to prolonged periods of excess heat. In extreme heat, machinery overheats, phones overheat, and people are no different. When the body temperature rises to 104 degrees F (40 degrees C) or higher, various symptoms can start to occur that indicates one has developed heatstroke and this is when emergency treatment is required. If you are out in the heat for an extended period of time, Mayo Clinic advises to keep an eye out for symptoms such as high body temperature, a difference in behavior, a difference in sweating, nausea, vomiting, flushed skin, rapid breathing, racing heart rate, and a headache. (3)

What Other Things Can Cause Heatstroke?

Heatstroke doesn’t only occur when it is extremely hot out. It can also arise from a number of different factors. It can even occur in the middle of winter if one is overdressed and doing an extremely strenuous activity like chopping and hauling firewood. Things like drinking alcohol can also interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature. Young ones and individuals over the age of 65 are most prone to developing heat stroke, as well as people with a chronic or new illness.

Other things can also contribute to heatstroke. When someone is dehydrated, they naturally don’t sweat enough which in turn, causes the body’s temperature to keep rising. Doing strenuous activities in confined areas where the airflow is poor can also cause raised temperatures in people. Between the hours of 11 am and 3 pm is when the sun has the strongest exposure, so it is important to take the necessary precautions and be mindful of that. It may sound odd, but even crowded environments where there are multitudes of people can cause heat stress. Working near hot machinery and near bushfires is another obvious cause of heatstroke. (3)

What To Do If Heatstroke is Suspected

For something that can have such disastrous consequences, heatstroke is something that can be avoided fairly easily with proper precautions. And it is vitally important to take these precautions when it is suspected because it can cause organ, nervous system, muscle, and heart damage. Preventative measures are the best thing to exercise regarding heatstroke signs and symptoms. Some of these are:

  • Drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids. Very cold fluids can actually cause stomach cramps, so it’s best that they are just cool enough.
  • Try to stay in the shade as much as possible and to keep physical activity to a bare minimum in very high temperatures.
  • Try to keep the air around you as cool as possible and wear light-colored clothing such as whites, that don’t attract the sun as much as darker blacks.
  • If you absolutely must be out in the sun at the warmest parts of the day, take frequent breaks, including water breaks, shade breaks, while keeping in mind to wear sunglasses and a cap to keep the sun off of you as much as possible. (4)

Animals And Heatstroke

Dogs, cats and other animals are not immune to heatstroke and they could potentially suffer more than people since they have a large and often thick coat of hair. Some precautions are:

  • Keep them inside at hot parts of the day
  • Reduce exercise
  • NEVER leave them in a car (5)

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Reginald Conroy

Thursday 6th of June 2024

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Thursday 6th of June 2024

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