Beat the Heat

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As a general rule, Amador County does not open "Cooling Centers" unless there are extenuating circumstances. 

If you are looking for a place to get out of the heat, we suggest the following:

  • Any government facility
  • Any business open to the public

10 Tips to Stay Safe during the heat from the California Department of Public Health:

  • Reduce exposure to the sun from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., when UV rays are strongest.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat to cover the face and neck, and wear loose-fitting clothing to keep
    cool and to protect your skin from the sun and mosquitoes.
  • Wear sunglasses that provide 100 percent UVA and UVB protection.  Chronic exposure to
    the sun can cause cataracts, which left untreated, can lead to blindness.
  • Liberally apply sunscreen (at least SPF 15) 15 minutes before venturing outdoors and re-apply
    at least every two hours – sunscreen prevents skin cancer, the No. 1 cancer affecting Californians
    and prevents premature aging.
  • Keep physical activities to a minimum during excessively high temperatures.  When working
    outside, drink plenty of water or juice even if you are not thirsty, and take rest breaks in the shade.
  • Never, EVER leave infants, children or frail elderly unattended in a parked car – it can take as
    little as 10 minutes for the temperature inside a car to rise to levels that can kill.
  • To prevent overheating, use cool compresses, misting, showers and baths – if you or someone
    experiences a rapid, strong pulse, feels delirious, becomes unconscious or has a body
    temperature above 102, call 911 immediately.
  • Prevent children from drowning by combining adult supervision at all times and have a safety
    barrier that surrounds a pool or spa.  Drowning is the leading cause of injury deaths for children
    under five.
  • Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes.
    Some mosquitoes carry West Nile Virus (WNV) which often mimics influenza, with fevers,
    body aches and eye pain.  WNV can cause serious health complications, and in rare cases, death.
  • Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaradin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR 3535 according
    to label instructions.  Mosquitoes usually bite in the early morning and evening so it is important
    to wear repellent at those times.
  • Eliminate all sources of standing water on your property, including flower pots, old car tires,
    rain gutters and pet bowls – mosquitoes breed and lay eggs in standing water.

Tips to Prevent Heat Related Illness

  • Never leave infants, children or the frail elderly unattended in a parked car.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Don't wait until you're thirsty.
  • Dress in lightweight, loose-fitting clothing. Use a hat and sunscreen as needed.
  • Drink fruit juice or a sports beverage to replace salts and minerals lost during heavy sweating. (If a client/resident is on a low-sodium diet, check with his/her physician first.)
  • During the hottest parts of the day, keep physical activities to a minimum and stay indoors in air-conditioning and out of the sun.
  • Use fans as needed.
  • Open windows to allow fresh air to circulate when appropriate.
  • Use cool compresses, misting, showers and baths.
  • Avoid hot foods and heavy meals-they add heat to the body. Eat frozen treats.

Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion

Heat stroke, which occurs when the body can't control its temperature, may result in disability or death if emergency treatment is not given.  Heat exhaustion occurs when the body loses a large amount of water and salt contained in sweat.

Warning signs of heat stroke vary, but may include:

  • An extremely high body temperature (above 103 degrees Fahrenheit, orally)
  • Unconsciousness
  • Dizziness, nausea and confusion
  • Red, hot and dry skin (no sweating)
  • Rapid, strong pulse
  • Throbbing headache

Warning signs of heat exhaustion vary, but may include:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Muscle cramps
  • Weakness
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Paleness, tiredness, dizziness

If you see any of these signs for heat stroke or heat exhaustion, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency and should do the following:

  • Have someone call 911 while you begin cooling the victim.
  • Get the victim to a shady area.
  • Cool the victim rapidly with a cool bath or shower, or by sponging with cool water, until body temperature drops to 101-102 degrees Fahrenheit, orally.
  • If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the hospital emergency room for further instructions.
  • Do not give the victim alcohol to drink.
  • Again, get medical assistance as soon as possible.

If a victim’s muscles twitch uncontrollably as a result of heat stroke, keep the victim from injuring him/herself, but do not place any object in the mouth and do not give fluids.  If there is vomiting, make sure the airway remains open by turning the victim on his/her side.

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