Children are at the highest risk for heat stroke


School is out, and so is the sun. The summer heat is already here.

Highs will reach the upper 90s this weekend, and it will feel even hotter with the heat index reaching up to 105 degrees. So what are you doing to protect yourself and your loved ones?

When Kourtney Hunt takes her nephew to the park, she makes sure to take the proper precautions to prevent heat stroke.

“One thing I always keep in mind is to bring a bottle of water or some sugar-free juice,” Hunt says. “Especially for my nephew to stay hydrated. For me, that’s the number one thing. Also, out in the parks I’ll do interment breaks with him.”

Rand Hartman is an Emergency Physician and Medical Director with Baylor Scott and White Health Medical Center. He says, “Children have a lesser ability to regulate their temperatures compared to adults. Children are far more susceptible, as well as our elderly patients. Those that are specifically under the ages of eight and older than 65 really have to take extra precautions not to be outside for prolonged or extended periods of time.”

While children may be more at risk for heat stroke, adults should be cautious too.

“The temperature is increasing, and we’ve had a very wet and humid spring, which means the heat index is really what you need to be careful of. Although the temperature may be 95 degrees, it may feel like 104 already,” Dr. Hartman explains.

So what can you do to prevent having a heat stroke?

“Everyone really needs to drink lots of water, stay hydrated, add some Gatorade,” Dr. Hartman says. Be sure to add some kind of sunscreen protectant. We recommend no less than SPF 35. Try to have most of your outdoor activities in the shade. Take frequent breaks. Stay in the air conditioning as much as possible and be advised that it doesn’t take very long at all to succumb to the illnesses of heat exhaustion.”

Dr. Hartman says the hours between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. are the most dangerous when it comes to heat stroke.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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