Heat is on: Stay safe in summer weather

It’s going to be a hot one this weekend, even here in the Upper Peninsula.

With that in mind, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is reminding all residents to stay safe and cool to beat the heat.

MDHHS data shows that when temperatures rise into the 90s, so do emergency department visits for heat-related illness, including dehydration, sunburn, and heat exhaustion.

“It’s important that all residents take the hot weather into consideration in their daily activities. Stay hydrated and out of the sun as much possible to avoid serious health complications,” said Nick Lyon, director of MDHHS. “We know that vulnerable populations are at increased risk for heat-related illness, so be sure to frequently check on young children, older adults, and others in your community who may need additional assistance.”

To prevent complications from the heat, residents are encouraged to drink more non-alcoholic fluids; avoid liquids with large amounts of sugar; spend time indoors, with air conditioning if possible; and wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. Those without access to air conditioning should contact the local health department to determine if a cooling center is available nearby.

In addition to staying hydrated and out of the sun, residents are reminded to never leave children or pets alone in a vehicle, even with the windows cracked. Temperatures inside a car can easily be double the temperature outside, and because a child’s body heats up three to five times faster than an adult’s, they are more susceptible to heatstroke.

Heat exhaustion and heatstroke are both forms of heat-related illness. Signs of heat-related illness vary but may include: heavy sweating, muscle cramps, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea or vomiting, fainting, an extremely high body temperature – above 103 degrees – and tiredness. Heatstroke occurs when the body is unable to regulate its temperature, and can result in death if not treated promptly.

Daily News (Iron Mountain)