POSTED: Monday, July 30, 2012 - 7:00pm
UPDATED: Monday, July 30, 2012 - 7:04pm
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — It happens every summer - above average temperatures mixed with high humidity create a dangerous combination for people and pets outdoors.
But since we are seeing the highest temperatures so far for the month of July, we want to remind you how to identify heat related illnesses.
"Heat related illnesses are related to the body's inability to dissipate heat effectively. There are various mechanisms the body uses to dissipate heat and those become ineffective at lowering the body temperature," stated Dr. Derek Brooks.
People most prone to heat-related illnesses are children and the elderly. According to the Department of Children and Family Services, since 1989, 21 children have died as a result of heat stroke and being left unattended in a car.
"We commonly see heat-related illnesses associated with football practices and any other outdoor sport,” said Brooks. “We shouldn't limit it to football; (athletes) can attempt to exercise through obvious fatigue symptoms, cramps. All of these are important features that should not be ignored."
To protect yourself in the sizzling heat, stay indoors, slow down if outdoors, drink plenty of water, wear light weight- loose fitting clothing, and check on elderly friends and neighbors.