Phoenix, Arizona — According to first responders and doctors, drinking great amounts of water can prevent illnesses that might be caused by extreme heat in Phoenix.
181 people in the Valley area died last year of heat-related causes, as stated in a report from the Maricopa Association of Governments. That was the biggest number of deaths caused by heat in the last thirteen years.
A warning regarding excessive heat was issued for the period from Thursday to Saturday. It concerned the Valley, but the other parts of the state as well. During that time span, temperatures were expected to be as high as 113 degrees.
According to the statement of an emergency physician at Maricopa Medical Center in Phoenix, residents of Phoenix generally knew how to handle the heat.
He said the group of people most inclined to be affected by extreme heat were immobile people, elderly, visitors, and people without air conditioning.
Prolonged exposure to extreme heat may lead to the following issues — headache, excessive sweating, dizziness, nausea, skin tone modifications, and moist and cool skin. The list of heat exhaustion symptoms was published online by the Arizona Department of Health Services.
Further, symptoms that indicate a possible heatstroke which can be life-threatening include hot and dry skin, lack of sweating, vomiting, pulsating headache, high body temperature, and eventually, loss of consciousness, according to Kenny Overton, Phoenix Fire Captain.
Absence of sweating in extreme heat indicates that the cooling mechanism of the body has failed.
Overton said it was crucial to call 911 right away and do everything possible to cool the person suffering from the indicated symptoms.
Quan listed spritzing an overheated person and using cold compresses as the main first-aid actions in the process of cooling somebody down.
First responders witness a vast number of cases of prolonged exposure to heat as well as heatstroke in such weather, according to Overton.
If a person feels thirsty, they have already been dehydrated. He has also advised not to consume drinks that contain caffeine, alcohol, and sugar.
According to Quan, avoiding direct sun exposure can significantly reduce the heat index of your body.
Overton has advised not to engage in outdoor physical activities during the hottest part of the day. Instead, he has suggested limiting such activities so that you do not expose yourself to excessive heat.
He said that frequent breaks were essential as well as drinking water abundantly before, during, and after such activities.
Other pieces of advice that may help you protect yourself during excessively hot weather comprise the following:
The website of the Valley offers a list comprising all the heat relief stations in the area, such as heat refuges and hydration stations.