Doctors urge special precautions during extended heat wave

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Kids find creative ways to cool off when they're out on the playground, but even in the shade, sometimes the heat can still cause problems.

Dr. Lori Weichenthal with UCSF Fresno has noticed more heat-related cases in the emergency room.

"We've had people come in for rash. We've had people come in with cramps."

Some people have come in after passing out.

"If you're sweating and keeping up with your hydration you're probably okay," says Dr. Weichenthal. "One of the first signs that you're getting into trouble is when you stop sweating. That means your body isn't able to keep up with the heat anymore."

Rising body temperature could accompany the dizziness and nausea experienced by the patient.

"If you made it that far you really need to listen to your body," says Dr. Weichenthal. "Get out of the situation. Get out of the heat. Get someplace cool. Drink a lot of fluids and if you're still feeling ill seek medical attention."

Dr. Weichenthal says in the high heat you need more than eight glasses of water a day.

Fresno County Health Education Specialist Michael Flores says, "The average adult needs two to four cups per hour."

Flores says water is better than alcohol or a sweet, caffeinated beverage.

"For the adults, that frozen margarita sounds like a good idea, that ice cold beer you think is going to be good, but again, alcohol and caffeine are going to dehydrate you.'

As temperatures soar, shade, water, and indoor air-conditioning are ideal.
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