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04 October 2005

Heat: Health warning

Rising temperatures around the country could prove to be very dangerous and lead to heat-related illnesses, the Health Department warned on Monday.

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Rising temperatures around the country could prove to be very dangerous and lead to heat-related illnesses, the Health Department warned on Monday.

Spokeswoman Charity Bhengu said temperatures reached over 30 degrees Celsius on Monday in many parts of the country and conditions were expected to worsen on Tuesday.

"Extreme heat may result in dehydration and other heat-related illness such as heat stroke.

Can be life threatening
"Heat stroke can be life threatening, causing death in as little as 30 minutes," she said in a statement.

Children, the elderly and people exposed to direct sunlight for a prolonged period were most at risk.

Drink lots of healthy fluids
The Health Department urged people to drink lots of healthy fluids throughout the day, avoiding caffeinated and alcoholic drinks.

She advised that people wear a hat, light-coloured, loose-fitting clothes and wear a sunscreen with a protection factor of at least 15 to protect against sunburn and prevent heat-related illness.

People should limit physical activity to early mornings and late afternoons and drink a minimum of eight glasses of water a day, Bhengu said.

Symptoms of heat-related conditions included fatigue, impaired judgement, headache, nausea, hallucination, fits and fainting. – (Sapa)

ReadStroke vs. heat stroke for more information.

October 2005

 
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