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KNOW THE DIFFERENCE


It is the time of year when the weather is hot and people are outside with sports and family. It is also the time of year where Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion rear their ugly heads. While both are uncomfortable, heat stroke is considered a medical emergency.

It is important to know the difference between heat stroke and heat exhaustion. It may save your life. Heat Exhaustion will have symptoms including headaches, dizziness or fainting, heavy sweating, cold, pale and clammy skin, nausea or vomiting, fast weak pulse, weakness or muscle cramps and excessive thirst. If you develop these symptoms in the heat, you need to hydrate with water or sports drinks, move to a cooler, air-conditioned place, lie down, sip water if you are fully conscious, use cold compresses or take a cool shower if possible and remove tight fitting clothing if possible. If vomiting continues, seek medical attention. Act quickly because, if left untreated, heat exhaustion can progress to heat stroke.

Heat stroke is considered a medical emergency. The symptoms include a headache, confusion or delirious, possible loss of consciousness, no sweating/dry, hot, red skin, nausea or vomiting, rapid heart rate and/or a body temperature above 104°F. If you believe you or someone around you has heat stroke call 911 immediately. Move the person to a cooler place. Use cold compresses to reduce body temperatures. Do not give fluids.

As always, if you have questions or need to seek emergency treatment for either of these conditions, please call Sabetha Community Hospital at (785) 284-2121.

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