TDH urges Tennesseans to be cautious during extreme heat and stay safe in the sun

Published 10:05 am Tuesday, June 21, 2022

NASHVILLE — Extreme heat continues to impact the state and the Tennessee Department of Health is urging Tennesseans to follow important safety tips to avoid heat-related illnesses.

“Summer is usually a great time to be outdoors, and it is important to be careful when you’re out in the sun, especially in recent high temperatures occurring across the state,’’ said Tennessee Health Commissioner Morgan McDonald, MD, FACP, FAAP. “To avoid heat-related illness it’s important to drink plenty of water and avoid being outside during the hottest part of the day.’’

Heat-related Illness includes heat exhaustion which causes heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, weakness and nausea or vomiting. The most serious heat-related illness is heat stroke.

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Heat stroke symptoms include red, dry skin, rapid pulse, dizziness, nausea and confusion. Steps to avoid heat-related illness include:
• Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water
• Avoiding alcohol and carbonated drinks
• Taking plenty of breaks
• Moving to a cool place
• Wearing light, loose fitting clothing
• Using sunscreen
• Seeking medical attention if experiencing symptoms

Look Before You Lock
Child safety is another concern with hot weather. Do not leave a child in a hot car where they can quickly become overheated risking serious injury or death. As a reminder:
• Always double check the backseat every time when leaving your vehicle.
• Consider placing a stuffed animal or toy up front as a reminder, or place your purse or other item you would pick up in the backseat with your child.

Sporting Activities/Summer Camps
Athletic and other camps are an exciting part of summer, and it is important to take steps to keep campers and staff safe.
• Drink plenty of water
• Use sunscreen
• Wear light, loose fitting clothing
• Schedule outdoor activities carefully to avoid being in the sun during the hottest part of the day.
• Camp staff should look for signs of heat-related illness and make sure participants are taking appropriate precautions.

For more more heat safety tips go to https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/warning.html.

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. Learn more about TDH services and programs at www.tn.gov/health.