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5 Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke

5 Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke

By Kristina Wilson

Jun 20, 2017

Updated Nov 17, 2023

5 min read

5 Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke

What is heat stroke?

Heat stroke happens when you’ve been exposed to high temperatures for a long period of time or participated in a physical activity in high temperatures, which causes your core body temperature to reach 104 degrees F or greater. Heat stroke is the most severe form of heat injury and is considered a medical emergency. Serious heat stroke can cause organ damage and even death.

Symptoms of heat stroke include:

  • Body temperature of 104 F or higher
  • Confusion, slurred speech, agitation, and even seizures
  • Skin will feel hot and dry and turn red as body temperature rises
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Rapid breathing
  • Headache
  • Racing heart beat

Treating Heat Stroke

Heat stroke can be very dangerous and is a medical emergency. If you think you or someone you know may have heat stroke, call 911 immediately. Also, get out of the heat as soon as possible. Remove clothing and try to cool the person down by using a spray bottle with ice water in it, spray with a cold hose, or get them in a cold bath.

Preventing heat stroke

  1. Don’t wear any excess clothing. Too much clothing in hot temperatures hampers your body’s ability to sweat and cool itself down. Wear lightweight and loose-fitting clothing when possible.
  2. Don’t drink alcohol in excess. Drinking too much alcohol can affect the body’s ability to regulate temperature.
  3. Drink plenty of fluids while outside and participating in active pursuits.
  4. Use sunscreen and wear hats and sunglasses while outdoors.
  5. Never leave anyone in a parked car.

VIDEO: How to Identify and Prevent Heat Stroke