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Published on July 22, 2019

Exercising in the Heat? Know the Signs of Heat StrokeExercising in the Heat? Know the Signs of Heat Stroke

Heat stroke occurs when your body’s internal system for regulating temperature becomes overwhelmed. When this happens, your temperature keeps rising, and eventually your body stops functioning properly. As summer sports practices kick off for the school year and our families exercise in the heat, it’s important to watch for symptoms of heat illness and heat stroke.

Symptoms of heat illness include a mild headache, slight dizziness and muscle cramping. As your symptoms progress, heat illness may turn into heat stroke. Symptoms of heat stroke include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness and problems with balance
  • Hallucinations, confused speech
  • Eventual loss of consciousness

If you are a parent who notices signs of heat stroke in your child, the first thing to do is to take the child out of the heat and cool them down as quickly as possible. If your child shows the neurological symptoms of heat stroke, call 911 immediately. 

You can help prevent heat stroke by drinking plenty of fluids and by getting out of the heat when you become too hot. Here are a few more tips for avoiding heat illness and heat stroke:

  • If you’re going to exercise in the heat, ease into exercise slowly instead of jumping right in with your full exercise regimen.
  • If you’ve been sick recently, you may be at higher risk for heat stroke. 
  • Certain medications can increase your risk for heat illness. Talk to your health care provider about your risk.

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