Summer has arrived in earnest. All around the world, Phoenix is notorious for being one of the hottest, most inhospitable locations on the globe through the months of June, July, and August. Little do most people know, Phoenix is actually a beautiful paradise during the remaining nine months. But, summer can be unpleasant. When temperature rise above 120-degrees, it can even become deadly. Whether you are a long-time, seasoned resident of the Valley of the Sun or you have just recently moved to town, there are always new tips and trick you could learn to make your life a little easier, a few degrees more pleasant, and much, much safer. Today, we are beginning a series of blogs on summer safety tips.
Dehydration is a major safety concern. Our bodies need water to survive. When suffering from dehydration, more water is leaving your body then you are taking in from drinking. Even minor dehydration can have a major impact on your health. The symptoms of dehydration include: heart palpitations, confusion, fainting, inability to sweat, sluggishness, weakness, dizziness, dry mouth, increased thirst, and swollen tongue. It is possible to be suffering from dehydration even before symptoms present themselves. More severe symptoms of dehydration include: fever, delirium, unconsciousness, nausea, rapid heartbeat, rapid breathing, and low blood pressure. If not addressed, dehydration can cause death.
To prevent dehydration, you should constantly be drinking water throughout the course of the day. It is recommended that adults drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water per-day.
If you are already suffering from the symptoms of dehydration you should begin by taking small sips of water. Sports drinks high in electrolytes are also a good choice. It is important to take in water slowly as nausea is one of the symptoms of dehydration. If a dehydrated person cannot keep down liquids, take them to the hospital immediately.
Prolonged heat exposure is one of the primary risk factors contributing to dehydration. Avoid remaining outside for more than a few minutes at a time. If you cannot avoid staying outside, find shade and stay there. If you are exposed to heat for a prolonged period of time, increase water consumption.
Infants, children, and older adults are the most at risk for experiencing dehydration. Infants and children have low body weight and are vulnerable to the rapid loss of water and electrolytes. As the body ages its ability to conserve water is impaired, placing older adults at risk as well.