Risk of heat-related illness increases as temperatures rise in North Texas

·2 min read

Summer weather in North Texas is bringing an increased risk of heat-related emergencies.

MedStar paramedics treated nine people for what appeared to be heat-related emergencies Saturday, according to a news release.

The emergency medical services implemented an extreme weather response procedure around 1 p.m. Sunday as the heat index reached 105. MedStar medics will stage in strategic areas to respond to patients who are at highest risk and upgrade the priority of heat-related calls, according to the release.

The National Weather Service in Fort Worth forecasts temperatures throughout the workweek to hang in the mid- to upper-90s.

MedStar warns of heat-related illnesses during this time, including heatstroke and heat exhaustion, and advises avoiding spending extended periods of time in the heat.

If someone is experiencing a heat stroke, a life-threatening emergency caused by long and intense exposures to heat, warrants an immediate 911 call, MedStar said in the release.

Symptoms can include confusion, vomiting, changes in sweating, hot and flushed skin, rapid heart rate, decreased sweating, shortness of breath, decreased urination, increased body temperature and even possibly convulsions.

Heat exhaustion happens when someone loses too much water and salt through excessive sweating. It can disturb brain function and circulation. Symptoms can include muscle cramps, paleness, sweating, nausea, and vomiting. Children and the elderly are at higher risk.

Staying hydrated, limiting activity when outside, making sure rooms are well-ventilated and covering up to limit exposure to the sun can help reduce the risk of those illnesses if you have to spend an extended period of time in the heat, according to MedStar.

Do not leave stay in cars without air conditioning running and never leave children in a car unattended. Do not leave pets in the car. Temperatures in cars can rise rapidly, even in the shade, and lead to death.

MedStar said it’s also important to check in on loved ones and make sure they are OK.

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