Heat Can Pose Significant Health Risk

Jun 11, 2014

With summer set to begin, it’s Heat Awareness Day Thursday. 

A hot summer sun can cause health problems like heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
Credit Paulo Otavio via https://flic.kr/p/4aJtEb

Emergency officials and the Oneida County Health Department say heat can be a real danger…especially for some older adults, infants and young children, and people with certain health conditions. 

Community health specialist Marta Koelling says don’t be tempted to leave children or pets in a hot car while you’re doing errands…as the air inside can heat up 20 to 30 degrees in a few minutes. 

“Even with the window cracked, the temperature in the car can rise really quickly.  So make sure that you’re either bringing the children or the pets or the people in with you, or you’re just not bringing them with you at all, you’re just not leaving them in the car.” 

Last year Wisconsin had 11 heat-related deaths.  The year before that it was 24.  It’s the number one weather-related killer in the state and in the country. 

And even though the Northwoods isn’t the hottest part of the Wisconsin, Koelling says it’s still smart to pay attention. 

“Since 1982, we’ve had eight heat wave events in Oneida County, we’ve had 28 heat wave days.  So it does happen up here.” 

Health officials advise keeping cool by wearing hats and loose fitting clothing, limiting physical activity and drinking plenty of water. 

And they say know the signs of heat exhaustion…which include dizziness, paleness, nausea and fainting.