Fact Sheet: Extreme Heat
KNOW THE FACTS!
It’s hot outside! Stay Cool. Stay Hydrated. Stay Informed.
- Heavy sweating
- Cold, pale, clammy skin
- Fast, weak pulse
- Nausea or vomiting
Watch for the Signs
Seek medical care immediately if you have or someone you know has symptoms of heat-related illness. Warning signs and symptoms vary but may include:
- High body temperature (above 103°F)*
- Hot, red, dry or moist skin
- Rapid and strong pulse
- Possible unconsciousness
*104°F taken rectally is the most accurate
In Extreme Heat…
Check on the elderly, or people aged 65 years or older, to make sure they are safe by staying cool, hydrated, and informed.
People with a chronic medical condition are less likely to sense and respond to changes in temperature. Also, they may be taking medications that can intensify the effects of extreme heat.
Most cities offer cooling centers or other air-conditioned shelter to the homeless or poor during times of extreme heat.
Never leave infants or children in a parked car.
Nor should pets be left in parked cars–they can suffer heat sickness too.
During an extreme heat event, check on at-risk friends, family, and neighbors at least twice a day. Encourage them to:
- Check on a friend or neighbor, and have someone do the same for you.
- Avoid using the stove or oven to cook.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing
Who Needs Special Care?
The elderly, people with a chronic medical condition, children, homeless or poor, outdoor workers, and athletes are most at-risk to heat sickness.
Athletes and people who exercise…
In extreme heat are more likely to become dehydrated and are more likely to get heat sickness.
•Limit outdoor activity, especially midday
when it is the hottest part of theday.
•Schedule workouts and practicesearlier or later in the day to avoid midday
•Pace activity. Start activities slowly and pick upthe pace gradually.
•Drink from two to four cups of water every hour while exercising. Muscle cramping may be anearly sign of heat sickness.
All activity and get to a cool environment if you feel faint or weak.
People who work outdoors…
Are more likely to become dehydrated and are more likely to get heat sickness.
- Drink from two to four cups of water every hour while working. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink.
- Avoid alcohol or liquids containing large amounts of sugar.
- Wear and reapply sunscreen as indicated on the package.
- Ask if tasks can be scheduled for earlier or later in the day to avoid midday heat.
It’s Hot Outside…
Extremely hot weather can cause sickness or even death.
STAY COOL. Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible and avoid direct sunlight.
STAY HYDRATED. Drink plenty of water and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
STAY INFORMED. Stay updated on local weather forecasts so you can plan activities safely when it’s hot outside.
KNOW WHEN IT’S HOT! Check local news for extreme heat alerts and safety tips.
For more information, go to https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/index.html.
Download a printable version of this fact sheet here.
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