How to prevent heatstroke?

Young man and heat stroke.

Our body has an optimal temperature at which it works. When this temperature rises above the optimal level it is called a heat stroke. Numerically its almost 40.5 ֯C at which the body’s internal systems stop working. Our body, unlike cold blooded animals, regulates its temperature by different homeostatic mechanisms.

These mechanisms either keep our body temperature low, i.e. sweating, or keep it warmer by goosebumps. But when you are not fueling your body properly it won’t have ample resources to work with. If you don’t drink enough water, no sweating will be possible. When it comes to this, the toxins and salts produced will remain in your bloodstream and will lead to organ dysfunction.

Many of these organs may face tissue damage. Some may end up working excessively to compensate for the problems going on. In most cases people end up fainting. All of this can affect your nervous system, heart, kidney and liver as well.

Heatstroke when pronounced seems like a casual dehydration effect. But it is not the case. It has many dangerous changes done to your body in a small moment that can lead to long-term problems. No water makes your skin dry. The psychological effect of heat can include confusion, dizziness, or may even lead to collapse.

Following are the warning signs of heat stroke

Extremely high body temperature

No sweating

Redness on skin

Dry and swollen tongue

Fast pulse rate




Recurrent episodes of unconsciousness

Here are the things that you can do to avoid a heat stroke

Drink plenty of water

Drinking water is an essential part of your living especially in warmer weather conditions. Your body loses its water contents through sweating, excessive saliva production, allowing your body to cool down. In order to make sure that there is enough water in your body, keep drinking more liquids. You can have juices, smoothies, shakes but avoid any carbonated or alcohol drinks. They add more sugar content which may cause you to feel thirsty instead of quenching the need of water.

Eat light food

Try avoiding eating anything that’s heavy r makes you feel warm inside. For example, eating too much

sea food or having soups and broths. Such foods can cause your internal temperature to rise which will eventually lead to you feel extremely warm and unwell. Instead of these you can eat more salads, juicy dishes like fruit cocktails. All of these will keep you fresh and hydrated, inside out.

Wear cool colors

By cool colors I am referring to colors that are more reflective rather than absorbing light. Wearing lighter colors will keep the heat out since they won’t absorb heat. Dark colors on the other hand keep absorbing energy and hence, make it harder for it to escape. You might even notice that the dark colors surfaces appear to be at a higher temperature than the lighter ones.

Don’t sit in locked cars:

It is important to understand that closed cars might seem safe but when parked in a hot warm area become suffocated. The heat allows you to inhale more oxygen and eventually the internal environment is devoid of air. This will take everyone under the condition of shock. Therefore, do not sit in a locked car and especially don’t leave your kids or pets inside for too long.

Keep yourself cool

Keeping yourself cool is the key or the most important part. You can do this by staying in a cool environment or by having something with you that will keep you cool. You can use a towel dipped in ice cold water or some water spray that will help you have cool splashes all the time. Activities like swimming and cold showers also help.

You can visit the Best General Physician in Lahore at Darul Sehat Hospital.


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