Summertime Heat Deemed a “Silent Killer”


The National Weather Service, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, as well as the American Red Cross has recently collaborated their research efforts and established that summer heat is a serious complication. In fact, they dubbed the heat a “silent killer”.

This is especially true for the young, the old, and those with medical issues – such as respiratory problems. Climate control is critical when it comes to safety in the heat. In this brief guide, you will learn how the body is affected by the summertime heat and the measures that we may take to protect ourselves from the heat.

What Does Heat Do to The Body?

Our body has the capability of dissipating heat by producing variations in the circulation of blood, by emitting water through the skin and the specially-designed sweat glands, and through the process of panting. Our hearts and other components of the circulatory system start to work harder and closer to the surface of the skin. The extra heat is then drained off through the skin.

Many believe sweating cools the body; however, this does not cool the body unless the water from the sweat is evaporated. When our bodies are subjected to heat, the body does all that is possible to maintain an internal temperature of 98.6 degrees F.

Summertime Heat Complications

Heat is deadly. There are four main types of heat disorders that may detrimentally impact the health of an individual during the summer months. These include sunburn, heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. The following outlines each of these heat disorders and provides a bit of information on each:

  1. Sunburn – This heat disorder results from direct and potentially excessive exposure to the sun. The skin will become red and pain may be experienced. Many may experience headaches, fever, blister development on the skin, and inflammation.
  2. Heat Cramps – If heavy exertion is evident in the summertime heat, pains and spasms in the muscles are likely to occur. If these heat cramps happen, the sufferer should be encouraged to stop activity and to sip on water or a sports drink that has been diluted with water.
  3. Heat Exhaustion – If a person remains in the heat for prolonged periods of time, a lot of salt and water will be lost from the body. The cooling system of the body starts to fail. Nausea, vomiting, and other uncomfortable symptoms may occur. There is a chance that the temperature of the body may continue to rise. 911 should be called for assistance.
  4. Heat Stroke – The body’s cooling system completely stops working. Emergency medical care is a necessity. Brain damage may occur and if left untreated, death may occur. The body should be moved to a cool place until medical help arrives.

As you can see, many complications may occur as a result of summertime heat. Staying indoors and cool is the proper way to prevent serious health issues from occurring. Have your air conditioner serviced today to ensure optimal summertime health.

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