High temperatures are expected this week in rural NSW and the Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) is urging residents to follow some simple precautions to beat the heat, keep cool and stay safe.
Health Protection Manager, Priscilla Stanley wants to remind the community and those particularly vulnerable to the heat, to stay safe and cool, and to look after each other.
“There are a number of steps people can take to protect themselves and people in the community against the heat. People need to be alert for the symptoms associated with heat exhaustion in themselves or others, especially young children and the elderly.”
“People need to make the most of shade and well ventilated or air conditioned areas, stay inside during the hottest part of the day and ensure they drink plenty of water." Priscilla said.
Symptoms of heat exhaustion include nausea, faintness and dizziness, loss of appetite, weakness, headache, and vomiting. Some people may suffer from an increased body temperature or an increased breathing rate on extreme heat days. Don't forget to check in on family and friends to ensure they are okay. Heat exhaustion symptoms can occur up to 72 hours after an exposure to a heat event, so stay alert.
People with existing conditions such as heart problems, diabetes or hypertension should take extra care in the heat. If you are aware of anyone that lives on their own that might be at risk, make a point of checking they are okay.
Other people who may be at risk of heat exhaustion include outdoor workers, people in workplaces with inadequate cooling systems and those undertaking strenuous physical activities. If possible try to carry out the bulk of the activity during the coolest periods of the day.
Should you have concerns about your own health due to the heat, please contact your GP or attend your local health facility and if you come across someone that has succumbed to the heat, call triple zero (000) immediately.