Much of Missouri will continue to see high temperatures and high heat indices this week. Last week at least four deaths in the state were believed to have been attributed to heat.
University of Missouri emergency physician Chadd Kraus says Missourians should avoid work outside during the hottest part of the day – roughly 10 to 4 – and watch for signs of heat exhaustion.
“That’s when we kind of start to have excessive sweating, we might feel faint or dizzy, we might have a little bit of nausea or vomiting, or some muscle cramps. When that happens we really need to get inside right away to a cool area, you need to drink some water, get out of the sun,” said Kraus.
Worse still is heat stroke.
“With heat stroke you start to get things like a rapid rise in your body temperature, so you may have a body temperature of 103 or 104-Fahrenheit. You start to get things like a headache. You may even stop sweating altogether,” said Kraus. “The big thing that really heralds heat stroke is that people often become confused or lose consciousness altogether.”
Kraus says victims of heat stroke need medical attention immediately.
He says people should be proactive in fighting heat-related illnesses.
“Drink plenty of water, and be aware that really everyone is at risk for heat exhaustion and heat stroke, so not to proceed with the attitude that, ‘I’m young and healthy so this couldn’t happen to me.’ It really can strike anyone of any age and any health status.”
Kraus says his E.R. has had some people come in suffering due to heat.