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5 Ways Excessive Heat Can Affect Your Health; Know Prevention Methods

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Heat-related illnesses become common during these ongoing hot summer months. Extreme heat can contribute to some serious health issues and exacerbate underlying health conditions. Heart stroke, dizziness, nausea, fainting, muscle cramps, headaches, tiredness and heavy sweating are some side effects of excessive heat. According to the World Health Organisation, heat-related mortality for people over 65 years of age increased by approximately 85% between 2000-2004 and 2017-2021. WHO also mentions that heat waves are among the most dangerous of natural hazards and even low and moderate-intensity heat waves can impact the health and well-being of vulnerable populations.

Here, let’s understand the impact of the heatwave on one’s overall health and ways to tackle these side effects.

How heat affects your health:

1. Increased heart rate

When you feel hot, your heart may beat faster. Your body also works harder in high temperatures which can result in increased heart rate.

2. Dizziness

Heat can trigger dehydration and dehydration can further make it harder for your brain to get enough blood. This can make you dizzy. It can become worse if you have been standing for too long or when you get up suddenly.

3. Low blood pressure

Excessive sweating during summer makes you lose fluids and electrolytes. Heat also makes your blood vessels dilated. This can cause a drop in blood pressure and make you dizzy.

4. Heat exhaustion

Exposure to extreme heat can make you tired, nauseated and lightheaded. Heat exhaustion should not be ignored. If left uncontrolled, it can cause heat stroke.

5. Dehydration

Excessive sweating can trigger dehydration. Dehydration can further contribute to issues like headaches, dizziness, confusion, sleepiness, decreased urination, dry mouth, low blood pressure and much more.

Other issues include heat rash, sunburn, edema, confusion, extreme sweating and deterioration of existing medical conditions.

What should you do

Drink plenty of water and avoid dehydrating drinks including caffeine and alcoholDo not leave children or animals in vehicles or poorly ventilated areasLimit outdoor activity, especially during peak hoursIf you have been experiencing symptoms of heat-related illnesses, seek medical helpUse sunscreen to protect your skinReschedule activities when the temperature is cooler

Follow these tips and stay safe this summer!

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

 According to the World Health Organisation, heat waves are among the most dangerous of natural hazards and even low and moderate-intensity heat waves can impact the health and well-being of vulnerable populations.    

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