Don't overheat; high temperatures spark safety tips
Thu, 03 May 2012 14:45:00 GMT —
When it comes to heat, Wednesday was a record-breaking kind of day. It heated up to 95 degrees, breaking the previous record of 93 degrees, set back in the 1960's.
Although the heat brought a lot of folks outdoors, those temperatures and direct sunshine also pose a serious threat, especially for small kids and the elderly.
"You may suffer heat exhaustion without knowing that you have an acute problem," said Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Physician, Dr. Whit Walker. "Typically, you're a little bit worse at two o'clock than you were at noon, a little worse at four o'clock. These things happen gradually in a lot of cases and if you're dehydrated, you may be confused."
One Amarillo mother, Alma Carroll, took her three small children to play outside Wednesday, but certainly not before she was completely prepared to combat the heat.
"I usually always carry water and sunscreen in my car," said Carroll. "We've got food and water, even if it's hot water, at least it's water to make sure nobody gets dehydrated."
Like Carroll, Dr. Walker said some of the best ways to defend yourself against the heat and burning rays of the run are to drink lots of fluids and apply sunscreen repeatedly. He also advised against being outdoors during the heat of the day or when the heat index is above 90 degrees. But if you don't have air conditioning, the heat can still be dangerous even indoors.
"Call somebody if you feel like you're getting worse," advised Dr. Walker. "It's great to have somebody check on people, sometimes people live at home where there is no air conditioning and they're becoming confused, it would be great if somebody could find out earlier rather than later if they're a little confused. So check on your neighbors."
Heat also becomes very dangerous for children if a small child is ever left unattended in a car. Dr. Walker said don't just crack the windows, take the child with you even if you only plan on being gone for a few minutes.