Our bodies have special regulatory mechanisms to control body temperature and adapt to changes in environment, evaporating body fluid, widening or constricting vessels.
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But these processes may fail to work properly, if you stay in the hot and humid weather for a long time. As a result, body temperature raises so high that may eventually damage muscles, brain, kidneys and heart.
Loss of water and electrolytes may lead to weakness, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, tiredness and headache. Medical specialists use term “heat exhaustion” to describe this body reaction.
In more severe cases, when organism loses ability to sustain normal body temperature, it may increase up to 104F (40C) or even higher. This is medically called heat stroke.
Classically, heat stroke occurs in older adults, children and people with chronic illnesses, who have weaker adaptive mechanisms.
But it doesn't mean that young people can't become overheated.
It's not uncommon that people exercise or work in hot environment. Physical exertion in high temperatures can really heat your body excessively, leading to stroke.
Tight clothing, which impairs sweat evaporation and cooling increases risks of heat stroke. Being dehydrated and drinking alcohol in hot place are other risk factors for this health issue.
It's extremely important to treat heat stroke as soon as possible to prevent severe damage of vital organs that can really threaten the life.
Seek for medical help immediately, if noticed these symptoms in yourself or in someone near you:
#1. Elevation of body temperature – this is the first and the most common sign of heat stroke. Your thermometer may show that your core body temperature is 40C or higher.
#2. Feeling sick – nausea and vomiting are not only about stomach flu. Hot environment may be a culprit too.
#3. Changes in breathing – raise of body temperature can make you to breathe more rapidly, affecting depth and effectiveness of breathing.
#4. Changes in mental state - heat may be very harmful for your brain. Neurons can't work in high temperatures that may result in seizures, agitation, speech problems, irritability and coma.
#5. Reddish and hot skin – increased body temperature makes the skin to become flushed and sensitive.
#6. Rapid pulse – staying in high temperatures puts stress on the heart. It tries to cool down entire body and begins to beat really fast.
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#7. Changes in sweating – sweating helps body maintain optimal body temperature. But in the case of heatstroke, when adaptive mechanisms don't work as needed, skin becomes dramatically hot and dry. However if heatstroke is a result of strenuous physical exertion, the skin may be damp.
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