Safety At Home

First Aid

Heat-induced Conditions

Signs and symptoms

Heatstroke: a medical emergency

  • high body temperature of 40°C or more
  • flushed and dry skin
  • pounding rapid pulse
  • headache, nausea and/or vomiting
  • dizziness and visual disturbances
  • irritability and mental confusion which may progress to seizure and unconsciousness.

What to do — Heatstroke

1. Follow DRSABCD.

2. Apply cold packs or wrapped ice to the patient’s neck, groin and armpits.

3. Cover the patient with a wet sheet.

4. Ensure an ambulance has been called.

5. Give water to the patient if they are fully conscious and able to swallow.

6. Seek urgent medical attention if the patient has a seizure or becomes unconscious.

Heat exhaustion

  • feeling hot, exhausted, weak and fatigued
  • persistent headache
  • thirst and nausea
  • giddiness and faintness
  • rapid breathing and shortness of breath
  • pale, cool, clammy skin
  • rapid, weak pulse.

What to do — Heat exhaustion

1. Move the patient to lie down in a cool place with circulating air.

2. Loosen tight clothing and/or remove unnecessary garments.

3. Sponge the patient with cool water.

4. Give the conscious patient fluids to drink.

5. Seek medical attention if the patient vomits or does not recover quickly.


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