What Is Heat Exhaustion?
Heat exhaustion:When sweating excessively in high heat, the amount of salt, or electrolytes, in the body can become depleted. This is known as heat exhaustion. Although not immediately life-threatening, heat exhaustion can become serious if left untreated. The CDC lists the following as symptoms of heat exhaustion:
- Headache and nausea
- Extreme thirst
- Heavy sweating
- Fast heart rate
Untreated, heat exhaustion can lead to heatstroke, which is a life-threatening condition. If you suspect heat exhaustion, take these steps immediately:
- Move the person out of the heat and into a shady or air-conditioned place.
- Lay the person down and elevate the legs and feet slightly.
- Remove tight or heavy clothing.
- Have the person drink cool water or other nonalcoholic beverage without caffeine.
- Cool the person by spraying or sponging with cool water and fanning.
- Monitor the person carefully.
Contact a doctor if signs or symptoms worsen or if they don’t improve within one hour.