High temperatures cause rise in heat-related illnesses

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OKLAHOMA CITY—EMSA’s second heat alert remains in effect for our city and with the warmer temperatures expected to continue, paramedics are concerned about residents staying cool.

Although the temperature has dropped a few degrees, the number of people getting sick is still on the rise.

In the past six weeks, more than 100 people have had to call paramedics for help after becoming overheated.

Cpt. Preston White said, “Some of the things we are seeing typically this year are heat exhaustion where we have muscle cramps, get nauseated, dizzy.”

 In addition to helping children and the elderly, officials say everyone needs to take extra precautions.

White said, “Athletes that say ‘well this summer is not as hot as last summer. I did okay last summer,’ but the humidity may be higher today or the day that they’re outside trying to do their exercise and then they end up succumbing to the elements.”

Ervin Cifuents makes sure his daughters Josselyn and Irani are getting enough fluids when they play outside.

He said, “At least, like, four bottles for each one, sometimes we drink Gatorade but mostly we drink water.”

Paramedics say one of the biggest factors the high number of people getting sick is the number of people doing outdoor activities who are normally inside.

White said, “People who are not acclimated with the warm weather get outside to accomplish their weekend chores, doing yard work and such, so they put a high demand on themselves.”

EMSA officials can’t stress enough how important it is to prepare for the summer heat before heading outside.

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