What is heat stroke?
The human body can regulate internal temperature within safe limits spontaneously. When we get hot, the temperature control centre inside our body will trigger responses such as sweating and increasing breathing rate to cool us down. However, when the environment becomes extremely hot and spontaneous responses cannot effectively cool down our body, heat exhaustion or even heat stroke will occur.
Symptoms of heat exhaustion include giddiness, headache, nausea, shortness of breath and mental confusion. When the body temperature reaches 41°C or higher, the sufferer will have convulsion or become unconscious; and this is heat stroke. Immediately, the body temperature must be brought down and first aid be given, or else the sufferer’s life will be in great danger.
Who is at risk?
Infants and children, the elderly, pregnant women, those with chronic illnesses, such as heart disease or high blood pressure, outdoor/manual workers, and individuals who are overweight are more vulnerable to heat stroke.
Pay attention to the weather warnings issued by the Hong Kong Observatory and take the following measures: