Heat stroke and heat exhaustion can occur during heatwaves or strenuous exercises, in hot climates, or when working in hot environments.
Heat stroke and heat exhaustion
Heat exhaustion is a general feeling of being unwell and symptoms like those listed below caused by becoming very hot and losing salt and water from the body. Unless heat exhaustion is identified and treated quickly, there is a risk of developing heat stroke.
Heat stroke is a less common, but far more serious and potentially life-threatening, condition where the body loses its ability to cool itself down, resulting in the affected individual’s body temperature becoming dangerously high, which can put tremendous strain on a person’s brain, heart and lungs, kidneys and liver.
Symptoms of these conditions may include:
- Decreasing blood pressure, dizziness
- Feeling faint, sick and/or being sick
- Headaches, intense thirst and muscle cramps
- Less frequent urination and/or much darker than usual urine
- Rapid pulse, sweating heavily, tiredness and weakness
Severe symptoms may also include disorientation, confusion, loss of consciousness and seizures.
Treat heat exhaustion by:
- Getting the victim to lie down in a cool place
- Exposing as much of the individual’s skin as possible by removing unnecessary clothing
- Cooling the skin using any available means, using a wet, cool flannel or sponge, or cold packs placed around the armpits and neck
- Fanning the skin while moist to speed water evaporation and subsequently the cooling process
- Giving them drinks, ideally water, fruit juices or rehydration drinks
- Staying with them until they feel better, which should be within approximately 30 minutes
Severe heat exhaustion or stroke necessitate hospital treatment. Call 999 and administer treatment as above until help arrives if the victim:
- Does not respond to treatment within around 30 minutes
- Is confused
- Loses consciousness
- Has seizures
In case of unconsciousness or seizures, place them into the recovery position and prevent injuries by removing nearby objects.
Heat exhaustion at work
Heat exhaustion can not only make you seriously ill, it could also lead to accidents at work. Your employer must protect you against injuries at work and work-related health conditions. If you were made ill at work or suffered a work injury because your employer did nothing to protect you, you could be entitled to work injury compensation.
In-house Accident Advice Helpline solicitors are industrial injury claim specialists with more than 15 years’ experience. Allow them to help you make a successful work injury claim by calling us on telephone number, 0800 689 0500, or 0333 500 0993 from your mobile now.
Date Published: April 29, 2016
Author: Accident Advice