Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke - Recognition

Heat Exhaustion

Expose to extreme heat can cause the body’s core temperature to rise above 37oC. If this happens the body will try to reduce its core temperature by excessive sweating, which will result in them losing fluids and vital salts. Causes include excessive exercise or prolonged exposure to hot conditions.

Symptoms include:

Hot, flushed skin

Profuse sweating


Headache, nausea and vomiting

A rapid pulse


Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is caused by prolonged exposure to hot conditions or as a result of an underlying physical condition such as a fever or illness. It occurs when the part of the brain that regulates body temperature stops working and the body cannot cool itself through normal means such as sweating. As a result, the core temperature raises to dangerous levels.

Symptoms include:

A high temperature (above 40oC)

Hot, dry skin

Nausea, dizziness and vomiting

An intense headache

Lower response levels

A rapid pulse and breathing

Muscle cramps


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