Pediatrician - Wall
3350 Highway 138 Building 2 Suite 126
Wall, NJ 07719

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July 21, 2017
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High Temps Can Make You Sick – Article from NJ Poison Control (NJ PIES)

Today is a hot one around the Garden State. As everyone continues to go about his or her daily routines, it’s important to remember that body temperature can rise to a dangerous level, making you extremely sick. Heat-related illness and deaths are preventable. Know the signs before you become a statistic.

Signs of heat-related illness

·         Heat exhaustion: heavy sweating; weakness; cold, pale, and clammy skin; fast, weak pulse; nausea or vomiting; fainting

What to do: move to a cooler location; lie down and loosen clothing; apply cool, wet cloths to as much of the body as possible; sip water; and seek medical attention if the person vomits and continues vomiting

·         Heat stroke/sun stroke: high body temperature (above 103 degrees Fahrenheit); hot, red skin - dry or moist; rapid and strong pulse; possible unconsciousness

What to do: CALL 911 immediately and follow the operator's directions - this is a medical emergency; move the person to a cooler place; reduce the person's body temperature with cool cloths or a bath; do NOT give liquids

Tips to prevent heat illness:

·         Always check for children and pets when leaving your car. Hot cars can kill. Leaving the windows down does not prevent them from getting heatstroke.

·         Air conditioning is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death.

·         Drink extra water (fluids) all day and less tea, coffee, cola and alcoholic beverages. Do NOT wait until you feel thirsty to drink – it may be too late!

·         Reduce or schedule outdoor activity for cooler times of the day, before 10am and after 6pm.

·         During outdoor activities, take frequent breaks and drink plenty of water or other fluids, even if you don’t feel thirsty.

·         Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting, open-woven clothes.

·         Wear a vented hat in the sun to protect yourself from the sun’s rays. Don’t forget sunscreen!

·         If you have a chronic medical problem, ask your doctor about how to deal with the heat.


“It is important to remember that the elderly, the very young, those with chronic illnesses, and pets are at greatest risk for developing such illnesses,” said Bruce Ruck, Pharm.D., NJ Poison Center, Rutgers NJ Medical School. Other factors such as dehydration and medicine usage may also play a role in developing heat-related illness. “Yes, you can get sick from the heat and some medications increase that chance.”


Medicines known to increase your risk of heat-related illness (not limited to this list):

·         Some antidepressants

·         Antihistamines (allergy medications)

·         Diuretics (water pills)

·         Antipsychotics


“By knowing who is at risk and what prevention measures to take, heat-related injury and death can be prevented,” said Ruck. Call the NJ Poison Experts at 1-800-222-1222 for emergencies as well as for questions or concerns regarding the medicines you take and their effects on increasing the risk of heat-related injury. If someone has collapsed, stopped breathing, or convulsing/seizing call 911 immediately, otherwise call us (NJ Poison Center) at 1-800-222-1222. Calls are free and confidential. Help is available 24/7 in more than 150 languages.


Help is Just a Phone Call Away!


Written by: Diane P. Calello, MD, Executive and Medical Director

Bruce Ruck, Pharm.D., Director, Drug Information and Professional Education

New Jersey Poison Information and Education System (NJPIES)



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3350 Highway 138 Building 2 Suite 126,
Wall, NJ 07719