Heat stroke
Dizziness and light headedness are signs of a heat stroke. Image Credit: Shutterstock

As temperatures rise to new highs over summer, heat exhaustion and heat strokes are a real threat to children going about their daily business of fun. Dubai Health Authority (DHA) posted on social media about the heat-related illness – and about what to do if you suspect a child is suffering from it.

So, what is heat exhaustion?

It’s a heat-related illness that can occur after you have been exposed to high temperatures and it’s often accompanied by dehydration, says DHA.

What are the symptoms to watch out for?

DHA lists the following flags:

  • Dizziness and light headedness
  • Headaches
  • Red, hot and dry skin
  • Muscle weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Rapid, shallow breathing
  • Unconsciousness

What should you do if your child is displaying these symptoms?

Do this if heat exhaustion or stroke occurs, says DHA:

  • Call an ambulance immediately.
  • Move the child to a shaded or cool place.
  • Take off excess clothing.
  • Help the child lie down, raise his or her head higher than the level of the body, and elevate his or her legs.
  • Use a fan to help lower their temperature.
  • Use cold compresses or a wet towel to wipe their head, neck and armpits.
  • If possible, help them drink water.

Is there any way to prevent heat exhaustion?

Certainly, says DHA, by following some basic preventive measures:

  • Avoid exposure to sunlight; wear a hat or use an umbrella when out.
  • Take extra precautions during the hottest parts of the day, between 12pm and 3pm.
  • Increase fluid intake.
  • Wear loose, light-coloured clothes.
  • Use sunscreen.
  • Never leave anyone in a parked car.