Health & Welfare reports two heat-related deaths as temperatures rise in Idaho

IDAHO — The first two heat-related deaths in Idaho have been reported to the health department. Both Idaho residents were over the age of 60.

With temperatures approaching triple digits this weekend, here's how to protect yourself.

According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, heat stroke is the most serious form of heat-related illness. Symptoms to look out for include high body temperature, hot red skin, confusion or seizures, nausea, dizziness, and fainting.

If someone has these symptoms and cannot get medical care, call 911 immediately, move to a cooler place if possible, use cool, wet cloths or ice on the head, neck, armpits, and groin, or soak clothing with cold water. You can speed cooling by using a fan.

According to the Department of Health and Social Care, you should not give a person with heat stroke anything to drink as they may not be able to swallow properly and could inhale the liquid.

“Please take care when you go outdoors this summer,” said Dr. Christine Hahn, medical director of the Idaho Department of Health. “Drink plenty of fluids, wear sunscreen and a hat with a brim. And be aware that temperatures can rise sharply during the day this time of year, even if it's cool in the mornings.”

The best ways to prevent heat-related illness, according to Health and Welfare, are to wear light and loose-fitting clothing, limit outdoor activities, avoid hot and heavy meals, drink plenty of fluids, and avoid alcohol and drinks high in sugar or caffeine.

For more information, see the full press release from the Department of Health and Social Affairs here.

Anna Harden

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