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First responders: Intense heat can cause serious health problems

First responders say intense heat can cause serious health problems

BARGERSVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — With another round of intense heat heading for central Indiana, public health officials are worried about an increase in heat-related illnesses.

Bargersville Deputy Fire Chief Michael Pruitt says people need to be constantly hydrating and taking frequent breaks from the heat.

“Just because you’re jumping in a pool doesn’t mean your body is absorbing that moisture from the pool and keeping yourself hydrated,” Pruitt said.

Pruitt said his department is seeing more than the usual amount of heat-related calls for this time of year, and thinks this heat wave caught people off guard.

“We get into the dog days of summer when we get into August,” Pruitt said. “Now, we are dealing with heat. We’re seeing heat early on this year, and sometimes because we’re seeing it this early, even though it’s the 4th of July coming up, we haven’t prepared.”

For those who are boating this weekend, Pruitt recommends bringing plenty of water, especially for those who far from the shore.

“Limit your alcohol intake because when we’re out in the sun, that alcohol is basically dehydrating us,” Pruitt said.

Your body’s core temperature is supposed to be 98.6 degrees, if you aren’t hydrating and you can’t cool your body down, you will get heat exhaustion or worse: Heat stroke.

“Heat stroke can cause long term damage to organs and death, we know this based on past history and cases we’ve seen throughout these hot months,” said Pruitt.

Pruitt recommends checking on elderly relatives and friends. A lot of them are reluctant to ask for help or may run the air conditioner on a warm temperature because they are on a fixed air conditioning system.