LEXINGTON, Ky (LEX 18) We are looking at a very warm forecast over the next couple of days. If you are thinking of spending time outside this weekend, there are things you can do to prevent heat-related illnesses.
The Center for Disease Control advises that during periods of extreme heat, you should be in an air-conditioned environment and take cool showers or baths. They say that you should not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.
If you are planning on hiking the Gorge this weekend or attending Lexington’s Pride Festival, be sure to wear lightweight, light-colored clothing and try to avoid a lot of direct sunlight. One of the best things you can do, according to the CDC, is drink more water than usual and stay hydrated. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink more fluids. The CDC says that in heat waves, avoid alcohol or liquids containing high amounts of sugar.
The City of Lexington says that the signs of heat-related illnesses include:
- an extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
- red, hot and dry skin (no sweating)
- rapid, strong pulse
- throbbing headache
- dizziness; nausea; confusion
- muscle cramps
- tiredness and unconsciousness
If you see someone experience these symptoms, move them to a shady spot, try to cool them down and continue cooling efforts until their body temperature drops to 101-102°F. Remember to seek medical help.
The City of Lexington also wants to remind everyone to not leave people or pets in hot cars.
To keep your pets safe, provide plenty of fresh water and beware of having them walk on surfaces that are too hot. A dog exposed to extreme heat and humidity is at risk for heatstroke. Heatstroke symptoms in pets include panting, lethargy, drooling, fever, vomiting, and collapsing. Take your dog to the vet if they are experiencing these symptoms.
The Center for Disease Control says that anyone can develop heat stress, but some groups do have higher risks for experiencing heat stress or heat-related death. These groups include:
- Infants and children up to four years of age,
- People 65 years of age and older,
- People who are overweight, and
- People who are ill or on certain medications
You can keep up with the forecast on LEX18.com/weather. Remember to stay hydrated and remind others to drink enough water.