Heat Exhaustion: Guide

learn about heat exhaustion

Are the summers setting in, do you feel heavy sweating ?

This is coupled with a rapid pulse.

So what does this stand for? What does it signify?

It is actually because of a condition in which your body actually overheats really quickly.

Did you know that there are actually three kinds of heat states.

what are types of heat states

The heat cramps are actually mild and the heatstroke means it is the most severe.

You should know that suffering from heat exhaustion  is not a common thing. It is a highly critical health condition and should be thought of like that

There are several symptoms and causes to look out for, as well as certain treatment options you can opt for.

In this blog post we will be talking about all that and highlighting all the essentials you need to know about heat exhaustion.

Let’s begin:

What is Heat Exhaustion?

This is basically relating to when you are feeling the heat around is overwhelming . This usually happens when you have been over-exposed to heat conditions.

The high temperatures become too overwhelming and in severe cases, it is also associating to you having  dehydration episodes.

This is excessive amount of exhaustion. And the two kinds of state you will be subjected to are:
*water depletion: when you feel extremely thirsty. This is often led by you having heavy weakness, feeling the onset of a heavy headache and in some severe cases, also having a loss of consciousness. Sometimes blisters can form too.

*salt depletion: this is similar to water depletion as you feel weak but this includes situation where you also feel nauseous and feel instances of vomiting as well as dizziness.

Now there’s one thing you should know- heat exhaustion is different from heat stroke.

Let’s get into the details of how they differ?

Difference between Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

what identifies as heat stroke

One thing which is the same about them is that they are both serious conditions. In heat exhaustion, you feel weakened muscles and there will also be excessive sweating, as well as nausea and vomiting.

In severe cases you will also feel like fainting.

When it comes to heat stroke, you will notice that your body’s internal temperature shot up and it is more severe in its conditions as you will feel that there are unexplained behavior issues.

Some people have also complained on how they will also notice the skin feels really red and hot. It also has the physical look of being flaky and dried out.

All these conditions point towards how these heat conditions feel like .

Both are mainly due to over-exposure to excessive heat but the way your body reacts to them differs.

Now we will talk about the symptoms of heat exhaustion:

Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion

fainting is a symptom of heat exhaustion

The symptoms don’t act together all at once. They actually take time in settling in This is because your body begins to react to the heat exhaustion symptoms differently at different stages.

You will not have these happening altogether. In fact some are more common than the others and happen more often.

Let’s now look into all the signs and symptoms that point to this state:

  • You will have a cool and moist skin when the heat exhaustion kicks in
  • In some cases, this skin condition also has goose bumps all over it
  • Faintness can also happen in those cases for whom heat exhaustion becomes too much
  • Fatigue is also a common state. Without knowing the reason, you will feel overwhelming weakness and tiredness which just won’t go away
  • Sometimes having a weak and rapid pulse is also common
  • Becoming nauseous is a common symptom too. This is when you are feeling weak and have an upset stomach often
  • Muscle cramps is a common state too
  • Nausea and headaches also go hand in hand

So these are the common and quick symptoms you need to look out for. When you feel an episode of heat exhaustion kicking in, you should practice some steps to make your condition better.

  • Firstly you should stop doing what you are  and take rest
  • Secondly, move to a place which is cooler and puts you at ease
  • It is best if you always have cool water by your side. If you are involved in heavy sports activity, you should consume sports drinks or energy drinks although energy drinks impact your dental health also, so consume it sparingly.

Now that we have a good idea on the symptoms, let’s talk about what are the major causes of this extreme health condition.

Causes of Heat Exhaustion

stay hydrated to avoid heat exhaustion

Heat exhaustion happens when you cannot maintain your body’s normal core temperature.

Our body’s temperature should be coming around 98.6F. This is the normal number.

When our body is not able to regulate this temperature due to suffering from being overexerted in the hot and humid climate, it is because your body cannot make itself cool.

This means your body becomes weak in its ability to cool itself. You will feel heat cramps are developing. This means you will face heavy sweating as well as fatigue and thirst.

Some other common causes of heat exhaustion are:

  • Dehydration-This is when you have very low water amount in your body. This doesn’t allow you to regulate and maintain the body temperature properly as the body does not sweat properly.
  • Overdressing is also a common cause
  • If you are suffering from kidney conditions, it can also spell disaster
  • Having intense physical workouts is also common
  • If you have a fever, it is likely to make you exhausted even more
  • In the case where you are suffering from an accident, you will notice that your body is compressed and the crash injuries can lead to you suffering from heat exhaustion
  • Smoking is also a common condition. It leads to heat exhaustion especially in hot and humid climates

So while this condition is common in any person, did you know that there are also certain risk factors which means some people are more prone to getting this condition as opposed to others.

So what are these. Let’s check them out:

Risk Factors to Heat Exhaustion

Here are some factors which make you even more sensitive to heat conditions.

  • Common in younger children
  • Those in old age are also likely to suffer
  • If you are on certain medications , they can also lead to heat issues
  • Obesity is also a common cause as your body doesn’t have the ability to regulate its temperature
  • In case of suffering from sudden temperature changes, you can have more heat-related concerns.
  • The heat index is also a common factor which you need to know of as it makes you realize and understand the kind of readings you should be having.

The point is you should learn to recognize your symptoms yourself. See when there is trouble brewing and act on it accordingly.

So what can be done? What prevention tactics should work? Let’s find out:

Prevention Tactics That Help

wearing loose fitting clothes help prevent heat stroke

The good thing is there are a number of precautionary measures you can adapt to ensure that heat-related illnesses are kept in control. Some of the best and most common ones are:

  • Wear loose-fitting clothes. This is really helpful. You should wear clothes which are of lightweight. It keeps your body cool.
  • Make use of sunscreen- You should know that sunburns are a common cause of heat exhaustion. It is essential that you keep your body and calm throughout. This can be done by making use of big sun hats as well as good sunglasses. And the most important one is to make use of plenty of sunscreen.
  • Take in fluids, lots of fluids. You should remain hydrated as this helps to regulate the body sweat. This is essential to maintain a normal body temperature.
  • When taking medications, be careful. Make sure you are aware of any heat-related issues you can face and opt for options which don’t impact your heat regulation capabilities.
  • Park in shaded spots and don’t leave anyone inside- did you know this is one of the most common causes of concern. Make sure your car doesn’t stay out in the heat for too long and never leave anyone inside, even pets, for even a few seconds. Many fatalities of such have been reported. Be mindful and careful.
  • Remain cautious- you can be your own best judge. If you feel that certain medications are acting up, if you have suffered from heat-related problems before, keep an eye out for more troubles and concerns. Overheating is also a risk factor. Learn to identify issues when they pop up.

Conclusion

Heat exhaustion is one of the leading causes of feeling drained and lethargic but there is more to it than just tiredness. This article provided you insights on how it is a serious medical condition and how we need to always know the symptoms and risk factors.

Also it is important to identify what are the root causes as well as what is the difference between heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

We also talked about the various prevention tactics that work. Your health is in your hands. Identify areas of worry and make sure to always stay up to speed on how to take things in control when they aren’t.

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