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Summertime heat

  • Published
  • By Staff Reports
  • 82d AMDS Public Health Flight
Can you keep your cool even when the weather isn't?  Don't sweat it.  Sweating in the heat actually helps to cool your body down. 

However, when the humidity is high, sweat will not quickly evaporate and it keeps your body from releasing heat.  The rate of release will depend on certain factors such as: age, obesity, heart disease, poor circulation, sunburn, prescription drug and alcohol usage and level of dehydration. 

Do not wait until you are thirsty to start hydrating.  When thirsty, your body is already dehydrated, potentially leading you to a heat illness.  Avoid sugary beverages, caffeinated beverages and alcohol when dehydrated. 

The average human needs at least 2 liters of water a day to be properly hydrated.  A natural indication of your hydration level is urine. Lighter colored urine is the better. If urine starts to become dark colored it is an indicator the body needs water.

When outdoors, be sure to use skin protection measures such as skin using sun block.  Wearing loose, light colored clothing helps to keep the skin cool.  If partaking in physical activity, replenish fluids every 15 to 20 minutes.  The best time to participate in outdoor activity is in the early morning or late evening to avoid the sun and heat.  When applicable, stay in cool shaded areas. 

If you personally experience or witness any of the following symptoms, seek medical attention immediately; high fever (above 105°F), dizziness or light headed, severe headache, fast breathing, fast heartbeat, muscle cramps, heavy sweating, feeling weak or confused, pale and clammy skin, lack of sweating, nausea, or vomiting.

For more information on heat prevention, please contact the 82d AMDS Public Health flight at 676-1874/3052 or visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at: