How the heat can affect your health

This Texas heat is playing no games this summer

A sun shining through trees (Pixabay)

SAN ANTONIO – The hot temperatures have many people in a heated mood.

This Texas heat has been barbecuing us all this week, and the recent plea from ERCOT to conserve energy isn’t the coolest of news. But with temperatures soaring, it’s important to keep your physical health in mind. Extended exposure to heat can cause health issues from heat cramps to heatstroke.

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According to Texas Mutual, a worker’s comp insurance company, the heat index is an important factor in understanding what to expect before you step outside. The heat index is a measure of air temperature and relative humidity, which means it could feel hotter than the actual temperature.

The San Antonio government also has a useful heat plan on its website that categorizes heat conditions, effects, and action steps into four levels.

  • Level I triggers an “excessive heat” warning when temperatures reach above 113 degrees. The chance of heatstroke is also increased.
  • At level II, a “heat advisory” warning is issued and heat cramps and sunstroke are more likely.
  • Level III is on the lookout for temperatures to rise to or above 100 degrees for two straight days. The health effects in level II include possible sunstroke, heat cramps and heat exposure.
  • Level IV categorizes normal weather conditions with a possibility of fatigue.

Under most of these conditions, you can cool down by moving to a cooler space, placing cool cloths over your body and drinking cool water.


About the Author:

Raven Jordan is a digital and social intern at KSAT 12. She majored in digital and print journalism at UNT's Mayborn School of Journalism.