With temperatures going up, it is important to be more cautious and aware of heat related stress on your body. Most heat related illnesses are the cause of overexertion and under hydration. It is imperative that you stay hydrated. You should be drinking water throughout the day. If you start feeling the symptoms of heat stress, find a shaded area and cool off. Most heat related illnesses can be prevented with proper preparation.
Heat stroke, the most serious form of heat-related illness, happens when the body becomes unable to regulate its core temperature. Sweating stops and the body can no longer rid itself of excess heat. Signs include confusion, loss of consciousness, and seizures. Heat stroke is a medical emergency that may result in death! Call 911 immediately.
Heat exhaustion is the body’s response to loss of water and salt from heavy sweating. Signs include headache, nausea, dizziness, weakness, irritability, thirst, and heavy sweating.
Heat cramps are caused by the loss of body salts and fluid during sweating. Low salt levels in muscles cause painful cramps. Tired muscles—those used for performing the work—are usually the ones most affected by cramps. Cramps may occur during or after working hours.
Heat rash, also known as prickly heat, is skin irritation caused by sweat that does not evaporate from the skin. Heat rash is the most common problem in hot work environments.
The chart below shows symptoms and first aid measures to take if a worker shows signs of a heat-related illness.
While waiting for help:
|* Remember, if you are not a medical professional, use this information as a guide only to help workers in need.|
All content from OSHA