Extreme Heat Events

Extreme heat events are unusual in Thunder Bay.  As a result of our cooler climate, we can be more at risk to days with extreme heat than those who are regularly exposed to a hotter climate. 

 

Health Illnesses

Heat illnesses include heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat fainting, swelling, heat rash and heat cramps

Heat Illness Symptoms

Symptoms of a heat illness can include:

  • Dizziness or fainting;
  • Nausea or vomiting;
  • Headache;
  • Rapid breathing and heartbeat;
  • Extreme thirst;
  • Decreased urination with unusually dark yellow urine.

 

Heat Stroke Symptoms

Symptoms of a heat stroke can include:

  • High body temperature;
  • Unconsciousness;
  • Confusion;
  • Lack of sweating.

If you suspect heat stroke, call 911 as this is considered a medical emergency

 

Who is Most at Risk?

While extreme heat can put everyone at risk from heat illnesses, those more affected include:

  • Older adults;
  • Infants and young children;
  • People with chronic illnesses;
  • People who work in the heat;
  • People who exercise in the heat;
  • Homeless people; and
  • People without access to air conditioning.

 

Tips to beat the heat

  • Drink lots of water before you feel thirsty- don’t wait till you are thirsty
  • Reschedule or plan outdoor activities during cooler parts of the day
  • Spend a few hours in a cool place (tree-shaded area, swimming, air conditioned spot like a public building- shopping mall, grocery store, library)
  • Avoid sun exposure. Shade yourself by wearing a wide-brimmed, breathable hat or using an umbrella
  • Block sun by closing curtains or blinds and windows during the day
  • Take a cool shower
  • Wear loose-fitting clothing made of breathable fabric
  • Never leave people or pets in your care inside a parked vehicle or in direct sunlight
  • Be aware that some medications may increase your health risk in the heat – talk to your pharmacist to find out and follow their recommendations
  • Prepare meals that don’t need to be cooked in your oven
  • Frequently visit neighbours, friends and older family members, especially those who are chronically ill, to make sure that they are cool and hydrated
  • Always check the UV index and practice sun safety tips. Visit UV Index to see the current UV index and learn more sun safety tips. 

 

For Further Information

Call the Family Health Team: (807) 625-5900

toll free: 1-888-294-6630

Last Updated: 31/07/2017