How Michiganders can stay safe in sweltering heat

How Michiganders can stay safe in sweltering heat
Published: Jun. 13, 2022 at 7:12 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Michigan is expecting severe heat arriving this week.

Gail Black oversees local road construction projects. Her job requires her to be outside in the sun all day. She understand the toll that heat stroke can have.

“I’m outside almost everyday,” Black said. “I mean since I’ve had it happen to me, I plan ahead quite a bit now. I’ve seen people, at least two a summer, that have gone down with heat exhaustion.”

Heat exhaustion leads to heat stroke, which can be deadly. Headache, nausea and an increased heart rate are all symptoms when the body temperatures rise to dangerous levels.

Related: Michigan communities prepare for heat wave

There’s a lot you can do to stay cool, but what if those methods aren’t working? And how do you know when it’s time to get help? The best thing you can do is to get out of the heat.

“I always look for the closest shade tree,” Black said.

If that doesn’t help, or if it’s not an option, it’s time to see someone -- like Sparrow Urgent Care nurse practitioner Teresa Beard.

“If prolonged too much, and it leads to like heat stroke, that definitely plays a role on the central nervous system,” Bear said.

She said you should closely monitor your symptoms in severe heat.

“If they’re experiencing more alarming symptoms -- like feeling of passing out, or if they actually pass out or confusion -- those are symptoms that may warrant a little bit more care like the emergency department or 911,” Beard said.

Black said they get creative on the job to get cool before it’s too late.

Taking breaks, staying hydrated, covering windows, wearing lightweight clothing and using your stove less are all ideas to keep your cool as the temperatures rise.

For more tips on staying safe, visit the state of Michigan’s official website here.

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