FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – With temperatures well into the 90’s and a heat index above 100 degrees, it’s a good time to remember to take precautions to avoid heat-related illnesses.
People should pay special attention to children, the elderly and pets, Tarrant County Public Health said in a news release.
An Ozone Action Day was in effect Thursday for the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Elevated ozone levels can mean poor air quality for sensitive groups.
“As the temperatures climb, it’s important to remember to check on elderly relatives, friends or neighbors for any signs of heat related illness,” said Tarrant County Public Health Director Vinny Taneja. “People 65 and older, infants and children up to age 4, and those with chronic medical conditions are more prone to heat stress,” he said.
Symptoms of heat stroke and exhaustion include a temperature above 103, dizziness, nausea, confusion and headache.
If someone shows these signs, call 911 and move the person to a shaded area; place in a cool shower if they are alert; monitor body temperature and continue cooling efforts. Do not give the victim fluids to drink.
To avoid heat-related problems, Tarrant County Public Health recommends following these strategies:
Stay in an air-conditioned area during the hottest hours of the day
Wear light, loose-fitting clothing
Drink plenty of water (avoid alcohol and sugary drinks) and don’t wait until you are thirsty
Take cool showers
Never leave a child, elderly person, or pet unattended in a car
Keep pets cool
Avoid unnecessary work or activities outside during the hottest part of the day
Avoid unnecessary sun exposure and wear a wide-brim hat if you need to be in the sun
Avoid using the oven to cook
Residents should also be alert for heat advisories and emergencies.
The National Weather Service declares a Heat Emergency when the heat index (temperature plus humidity) reaches 108 degrees on two or more consecutive days.
A heat index of 108 is a potential health threat for all people, particularly those in high risk groups.
For more information on extreme heat, click here.