Health & Safety

May 11, 2012

Health professionals offer cool advice

By Airman 1st Class Lincoln Korver
Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Public Affairs

(AFNS) — Anyone who has gone through basic military training knows how seriously the instructors take “hydrating,” but do the trainees really know why they are encouraged to drink water regularly and beyond thirst?

The human body’s main goal is to maintain homeostasis, or balance, in all aspects of function. This includes maintaining a constant core internal temperature. Two main ways the body tries to combat overheating is by increasing blood flow to the skin’s surface in order to dissipate heat and by releasing sweat through pores to cause conventional cooling. Replacing fluids that were lost through sweat and urine is therefore essential.

“When cooling mechanisms begin to decompensate, the results can be catastrophic if not dealt with early on,” said Dr. Peter Paily, of the Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Family Medical Care Clinic. “This can develop into heat illness.”

There are three types, he said.

Heat cramps are painful, involuntary contractions usually developed in large muscle groups including the arms, legs and trunk. They result from dehydration and an extreme loss of electrolytes. If the body does not receive proper treatment, this can lead to heat exhaustion.

Symptoms of heat exhaustion can include rapid heart rate, fatigue, muscle weakness, nausea and vomiting, headaches, blurred vision and possible fainting, Paily said.

If these symptoms are not taken seriously, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke.

This is a complete breakdown of the body’s cooling system, he said. Common symptoms include body temperature surpassing 103 degrees; a stopping of sweat production; dry, flushed and red skin; headaches; weakness; lightheadedness and fainting; rapid pulse; shortness of breath; seizures; confusion; hallucinations; and unconsciousness.

“This is a medical emergency that can lead to death,” Paily said. “Call 911 immediately and move the victim to a cool area, cool them with water and loosen constrictive clothing.”

Four thousand Americans die from a heat-related illness each year, Paily said.

Although people of all age groups are at risk of getting heat illness, there are specific things that can make certain people more susceptible to it, said Brenda Wallsmith, a registered nurse at the clinic.

“Those at greatest risk for heat-related illness include infants and children up to 4 years of age, people 65 years of age and older, people who are overweight and people who are ill or on certain medications,” Wallsmith said.

While heat illness is a serious issue, precautionary actions can be surprisingly simple.

To prevent heat illness, people should stay hydrated; wear loose, light-colored clothing; get proper rest; and stay committed to having a healthy diet, Paily said.

“Heat-related illnesses … should not be taken lightly,” Paily said. “Symptoms can creep up on you faster than you think. So simply staying hydrated and taking precautions can prevent a fatal outcome from heat-related illness.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Air Force fighters, bombers conduct strikes against ISIL targets in Syria

TAMPA, Fla. — U.S. military forces and partner nations, including the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, undertook military action against ISIL terrorists in Syria Sept. 22, using a mix of fighter, bomber, remotely piloted aircraft and Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles to...
 
 
page-one

End of an era: 65th AGRS set to deactivate

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. – After almost a decade of unyielding service, the 65th Aggressor Squadron will be deactivating. Since being reactivated Sept. 15, 2005, the 65th AGRS helped provide air combat training for militar...
 
 

Information security part of everything we do

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — It’s been one of those days. You are super busy and your unit just received another tasking. You are trying to do five jobs at once and don’t even have time to think. You decide to help your unit deployment manager get the word out and forward an email...
 

 

When leaders earn their keep

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas — It’s no secret that a key to being a good leader, military or otherwise, is taking care of your people. I strongly believe Airmen aren’t able to perform at their peak if their personal lives are in disarray. Whether financial woes, marital issues, illnesses or other troubles, it’s tough...
 
 
birthday2

Nellis celebrates Air Force birthday

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Victoria Sneed Lt. Col. Tammy Johnson, 99th Force Support Squadron commander, and Airman Scott Chatwin, 99th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle operator apprentice, cut a ceremonial U.S. Air...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika

Nellis remembers POWs, those MIA

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika U.S. Armed Forces veterans bow their heads in remembrance during the Prisoner of War and Missing in Action Recognition Ceremony at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Sept. 19. During th...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin