Being observant and avoiding heat stroke and exhaustion while outside in high temperatures

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — As extreme heat makes its way into KELOLAND this week, taking extra precautions while outside is crucial.

Many parts of South Dakota could see triple digit temperatures the next couple days. Arleigh Trainor, an emergency care specialist with Sanford Health, says heat stroke is one condition that leads people to the emergency room.

“This is when you get exposed to heat and your temperature gets quite high and you start to have neurological symptoms with it. This can be confusion. This can be seizures. This can be weakness of one arm, one leg, kind of mimicking a stroke, or changes in sensation,” Trainor said.

Trainor says you should seek medical attention if you experience those symptoms. While heat stroke is more severe, you should also watch for signs of heat exhaustion.

“That would be something where you start to get some muscle cramps, kind of headache, kind of nauseous. Those types of symptoms, almost flu-like in nature. If those symptoms occur, you need to get out of the heat immediately, you need to drink plenty of water, and if you can, add a little bit of salt to that, because that’ll actually keep the water in your system,” Trainor said.

If you plan to be outside for long periods or time, make sure to take breaks, find shade whenever possible and drink plenty of water.

Caroline Fyffe is in Sioux Falls from Oregon visiting family. She was at McKennan Park with her granddaughter Monday.

“We go swimming a lot to stay cool whenever we get too warm and stay in the shade,” she said.

Greta Smith found a spot under a tree to do some painting.

“It’s a lot cooler in the shade. It looks like we got some wind here. It’s a lot of fun, it’s relaxing and it keeps me pretty stress free,” she said.

Trainor says to also check in on people often.

“Take care of the vulnerable. Take care of the elderly. Take care of the very young when you’re dealing with this, and also people with health conditions. Talk to people that you’re with. Be aware if somebody looks like they’re struggling and help out,” she said.

You should also make sure you wear sunscreen, cover your skin and try to be in the air conditioning as much as possible.

Learn more about avoiding heat-related illnesses from the CDC here.

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