Health official discusses signs of heat-related illnesses

JACKSON, Tenn. — Hot weather is here, and it’s not leaving any time soon. With it comes health concerns.

“Each year CDC reports about 618 people die in the U.S. every year due to heat-related illnesses. It’s not something to take lightly. It’s something that’s very serious and people need to take precautions and protect themselves from the heat,” said Mallory Cookie, Public Information Officer for the Jackson-Madison County Regional Health Department.

There are various symptoms that mean you might be experiencing a heat-related illness, from headaches to dizziness and even a fast pulse.

“There are several different things you can have. You can have heat cramps, heat exhaustion, heat stroke. That’s something that’s very serious, and heat-related illnesses can lead to death,” Cooke said.

Many heat-illnesses are preventable. Staying indoors, drinking lots of water, and wearing loose clothing are ways you can possibly beat the heat.

“Don’t wear your dark colors, your blacks, your navy blues. You want to stick to light weight clothes. If you do have to be outside, try to limit those activities to super early in the morning to super late in the afternoon,” Cooke said.

Staying hydrated is key to avoiding any type of heat-related illness.

“If you are outside working in the heat or have to be outside, just make sure you just watch what you’re drinking. Water is always the best solution for staying hydrated, but you know some people might want a Gatorade or a Powerade,” Cooke said.

Health officials advise you to stay in an air conditioned area and limit your time outside.

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