MINNEAPOLIS — It’s imperative for Minnesotans to be mindful of the warning signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke during streaks of hot temperatures. Here’s what to know.
Let’s start with heat exhaustion. According to state health officials, signs of this condition include mild headache, lightheadedness, cool/pale skin with heavy sweating, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, fatigue, and weakness.
If a person shows signs of heat exhaustion, it’s recommended to move them to a cooler place, have them drink cool water or sports drinks, lay them down and call 911 if symptoms last for more than an hour.
Heat stroke is a more serious heat-related condition. The signs include throbbing headache, confusion, seizure, irritability, altered/loss of consciousness, oral body temp of 104 degrees and above, dry mouth, hot skin, nausea and vomiting.
If anyone shows signs of heat stroke, it’s recommended to call 911 immediately and move the person to a cooler place. Other priorities include cooling the person by immersing them in cool water or placing ice packs on the neck and groin areas.
It should be noted that many signs of heat exhaustion can overlap with signs of heat stroke, so whenever you are in doubt, it’s a safe bet to call 911.
There are people that are more vulnerable to heat-related illnesses, including the elderly, young children, and people with underlying medical conditions.
If you need to venture out into the heat, it’s important to drink fluids frequently throughout the day, wear light-colored and light-weight clothing, and take frequent breaks in the shade.
More information on heat-related illnesses can be found on the state’s health department website.
NOTE: Featured video is from June 13, 2023.