Lethbridge First Aid: What is Heat Exhaustion?

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When it comes to the complications of a hot summer weather, the first thing that usually comes into mind for residents who do not experience this type of climate on a regular basis is sunburn. This is why other medical conditions that are more life-threatening such as heat exhaustion and dehydration are often pushed to the side. On July 2014, Global News Canada interviewed Lethbridge residents who are enjoying the summer heat regarding the steps that they are taking to avoid the medical complications of the hot weather in which most of the respondents reported that their focus is sun-damage prevention. This is why learning more about heat exhaustion and how it can be managed by taking Lethbridge first aid classes is a must for residents.

What is heat exhaustion?

Heat exhaustion is defined as a type of fatigue that is caused by the insufficient supply of fluids and electrolytes in the body. This insufficiency happens when there is a decrease in the blood flow which caused the blood volume level to go down. Considering that fluid and electrolyte exchange happens in the bloodstream, a decrease in blood flow leads to insufficient fluids and electrolytes in the body. During the hot summer weather, the arteries and veins dilate which causes the blood flow inside the body to dramatically decrease. As a result, the body suffers from fatigue known as heat exhaustion.

Lethargy Caused by Heat Exhaustion

Lethargy Caused by Heat Exhaustion

What are the symptoms of heat exhaustion?

Some of the most common symptoms of heat exhaustion include profuse sweating, pale or flushed skin and lethargy. Recognizing these symptoms allow rescuers to immediately administer the right first aid techniques for patients who are suffering from heat exhaustion. This will help patients avoid more debilitating complications of heat exhaustion which include brain trauma and death.

What are the first aid treatments for heat exhaustion?

The primary objective that first aid rescuers need to focus on when it comes to treating a person who is suffering from heat exhaustion is to lower the body’s temperature by transferring the patient to a cooler environment. However, most people who suffer from heat exhaustion tend to suffer from heat syncope or fainting. When this happens, they are at risk for bone fractures and internal bleeding which means that careful and safe transportation procedures should be followed to avoid further injuries. This is followed by a series of non-pharmacological interventions which are aimed towards normalizing the body’s functions.

By taking Lethbridge first aid classes, residents will learn how to transport these types of patients as well as the other non-pharmacological treatments that they can give.

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