While it’s always sunny in San Diego, the weather really starts to heat up in the summer months. During this season, it is natural to want to be outdoors soaking up the sun. With attractions like the San Diego County Fair, the San Diego Zoo, Padres games and Sea World, it’s likely that you and your family will get your share of vitamin D.

However, it’s important to take proper care as you enjoy the outdoors.

  • Always wear sunscreen and reapply every couple hours.
  • Stay out of direct sunlight for long periods of time.
  • Wear light-colored clothing to protect yourself.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day.

Many of these precautions probably seem repetitive by now but should not be taken lightly. Not only do these tips protect you from sunburn and sun spots, they also help prevent heat-related illness.

As an added precautionary measure, Family Health Centers of San Diego (FHCSD) wants our patients to be informed on the symptoms and appropriate responses to heat-related illness. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), muscle cramps may be among the first signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

Signs of heat exhaustion include excessive sweating, clammy skin, weakness, nausea, vomiting, fainting or a fast, weak pulse. Here’s how you should respond to the onset of any of these symptoms:

  • Find a place to cool down.
  • Apply wet cloths to lower your body temperature.
  • Loosen clothing or remove restrictive clothing if possible.
  • Sip cool water.
  • Lie down.
  • If you are experiencing vomiting, seek imte medical attention.

Signs of heat stroke are more severe. Symptoms include body temperature over 103⁰F, skin that is hot, a rapid, strong pulse and possible unconsciousness. Heat stroke is a medical emergency and should be treated as such. Here’s how to respond:

  • Call 911 imtely!
  • Move the affected person to a cooler location.
  • Apply cool cloths to lower the person’s body temperature.
  • Do NOT give fluids.

FHCSD cares about you and your family’s health and safety. Please take heed to these precautions as you enjoy outdoor activities this summer and throughout the year. For non-emergency concerns, please call our office at (619) 515-2300 to make an appointment with one of our medical providers.

 

Source: Centers for Disease Control