With the summer months on the horizon, warm weather tends to draw attention towards the risks of heat-related illness. Resulting from extreme exposure to heat and hot environments, heat stress causes occupational illnesses such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion, heat cramps, or heat rash. The summer months naturally are a high-risk time of year, given soaring temperatures and elevated humidity; however, strenuous physical activity near radiant heat sources, in stuffy and heated interior environments, or around heated objects also poses elevated risks for heat stress.
Signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion may develop suddenly or over time, especially with prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures. Contact your doctor if your signs or symptoms worsen or if they don't improve within one hour. If you are with someone showing signs of heat exhaustion, seek immediate medical attention if he or she becomes confused or agitated, loses consciousness, or is unable to drink.