The most serious heat related illness is heat stroke. In simple terms, heat stroke is a breakdown of the cooling mechanisms of the body, induced by high body temperature. Someone who is experiencing heat stroke may stop sweating altogether and the skin will appear dry and hot. The pulse is usually strong but rapid. The person may have labored and difficult breathing. Body temperature can exceed 106 degrees Fahrenheit! Symptoms include confusion, irrational behavior, convulsions, coma, and death.
- Move the victim to a cool place
- Remove heavy clothing; light clothing can be left in place
- Immediately cool the victim by any available means. Such as placing ice packs at areas with abundant blood supply (neck, armpits, and groin). Wet towels or sheets are also effective. Clothes should be kept wet with water
- To prevent hypothermia continue cooling the victim until their temperature drops to 102 degrees Fahrenheit
- Keep the victim's head and shoulders slightly elevated