With a heatwave hitting a good portion of the country this week, including the Midwest, the Nodaway County Health Department has given some tips to help beat the heat.

Those most at risk for heat-related illnesses are the elderly, people living with chronic medical conditions, children, the homeless, the poor, athletes and those working outdoors.

Working Outside

People who work outdoors should:

• Drink plenty of fluids every hour while working
• Avoid beverages with alcohol, sugar or caffeine
• Wear and reapply sunscreen
• Wear loose, lightweight and light colored clothing
• Wear protective gear like hats and sunglasses
• Schedule work hours earlier or later in the day to avoid midday heat

Check on elderly friends, family and neighbors throughout the day to make sure they stay cool, hydrated and informed.

The inside of a car can reach life threatening temperatures in minutes. Never leave children or pets in a parked car even if the car is shaded and the windows are down.

Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is the body’s response to an excessive loss of water and salt, usually through sweating.

Move to a cool place and lie flat with feet elevated. Apply cool, wet cloths to forehead and wrists. Sip cool beverages. Call 911 if any of the following symptoms continue:

•  Heavy sweating
•  Fast, weak pulse
•  Tiredness or weakness
•  Paleness
•  Dizziness or fainting
•  Chills
•  Muscle cramps
•  Nausea or vomiting

Heat stroke

Call 911 or call emergency room for instructions if any of the following symptoms are present. Move to a cool place and lie flat with feet elevated. Immerse or sponge with cool (not cold) water and fan vigorously. Continue to monitor body temperature until it drops to 101 – 102°F.

•  Extreme high body temperature at 103°F or higher
•  Confusion
•  No sweating
•  Tingling sensations
•  Dizziness
•  Nausea
•  Convulsions

Find a Cooling Center

Cooling centers throughout Missouri can be found at https://ogi.oa.mo.gov/DHSS/coolingCenter/index.html.

Cooling centers listed for Nodaway County include:

• Community Services Inc., Nodaway County
• Maryville Public Library
• Nodaway County Health Center
• Nodaway County Senior Citizens Center
• Walmart

For information and resources on heat precautions contact Nodaway County Health Center or visit Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services at http://health.mo.gov/living/healthcondiseases/hyperthermia/index.php.