June 23, 2009

News Release

For Immediate Release

Protect Against Heat-Related Illness

With a heat advisory in effect and the National Weather Service predicting high temperatures and a high heat index for several days, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department urges residents to take steps to protect against heat-related illnesses.

Heat-related illnesses like heat exhaustion and heat stroke occur when the body’s temperature control system is overloaded. Children, senior adults and people with chronic illness are at highest risk.

Heat exhaustion is the most common heat-related illness and can lead to dehydration. Symptoms include heavy sweating, paleness, tiredness, muscle cramps, weakness, dizziness or fainting, headache, nausea or vomiting. A person with these symptoms should move to a cool spot, rest and drink cool water.  If symptoms worsen or last longer than an hour, they should seek medical attention.

Heat stroke occurs when the body’s temperature climbs to 104°F. It can be deadly. Call 9-1-1 immediately if a person has symptoms including a high body temperature, red, hot or dry skin, rapid pulse, throbbing headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion or unconsciousness.

To protect against heat-related illness:

The Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management has opened the following cooling centers in Springfield, during normal business hours:

For more information, call (417) 864-1658, email health@springfieldmo.gov or visit www.springfieldmo.gov/health.

Media contact:
Jaci McReynolds, Public Information Administrator (417) 874-1205 office • (417) 830-9511 cell

springfield greene county health department
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Harold K. Bengsch Building

227 E. Chestnut Expwy. • Springfield, MO 65802
417-864-1658 • health.springfieldmo.gov