Summer hits and our habits change. From warmer weather to spending more time outdoors, there is a lot to love about these months in San Joaquin County. However, there are some risks that come with these hot weather behaviors. Keep this list close so you know how to respond in case of an emergency.
There is a difference between being hot and overheating or suffering heat stroke. If you’re sensitive to the heat, stay inside during peak hours (typically 10 AM to 4 PM). Symptoms of overheating include a temperature over 104 degrees F, a weak pulse, or hot or red skin. If you experience these symptoms, get inside, drink water, and put cold cloths on your skin. If someone begins seizing or becomes unconscious, call 911.
Drowning can happen anywhere, and that is a scary thought. The most important thing to know is how to recognize drowning. People who are drowning don’t often look like it. In fact, many people who are drowning are completely still, almost paralyzed. If you suspect drowning, get a lifeguard. If no one is around, help the person in distress if you can. Get them to shore and perform CPR if necessary. If the person is unconscious or unresponsive, call 911.
If you’re spending more time outdoors camping, hiking, swimming, etc., keep an eye out for poison oak. Remember, “leaves of three, let them be.” Teach young kids what poison oak looks like so they can avoid it, too. If you know you’ll be in an area where poison oak could be prevalent, bring ointment or cream along. If someone comes into contact with it, wash the area with soap and water immediately. Then, apply ointment. This can reverse some of the effects. If you develop a rash, treat the itchiness with over-the-counter medication until it subsides.
Eating out at barbecues and other events, it’s possible to accidentally come into contact with allergens. If you’re severely allergic, keep an epi-pen on you. After using an epi-pen, go to the hospital. It is possible for severe symptoms to resurface. If symptoms are less severe, take Benedryl. The best defense, however, is prevention. Always ask what is in the food before diving in.
The bees are out in droves come summer. If you have a severe allergy, carry an epi-pen everywhere. If not, stay true to the adage “if you don’t bug them, they won’t bug you.” If you or a child are stung, remove the stinger and use a bee sting ointment to ease symptoms.