Hyderabad: With mercury consistently staying above 42 degree Celsius, State health officials have urged people to avoid venturing out between 1 p.m. and 4.30 p.m. when the dry heat is at its peak. In case of unavoidable circumstances, those who have to travel under the hot sun in the afternoons, then basic precautions like wearing light-coloured clothing, hats, caps and using handkerchiefs to avoid overheating are a must, doctors advise.
Physicians point out that healthy individuals with co-morbid conditions like diabetes, hypertension, heart and liver ailments and kidney will not be able to withstand high temperatures of the 41 degree Celsius to 45 degree Celsius range. “Pregnant women, children and elderly always are susceptible because of their fragile health condition. Then there are workers like daily wagers and people who do their jobs outdoors and are prone to sunstrokes because they get dehydrated quickly,” says Superintendent, Fever Hospital, Dr K Shankar.
The core body temperatures, among persons with co-morbid conditions, increase rapidly to alarming levels when they get exposed to hot sun, doctors said. Once the body temperature rises, other systems in the body gets impacted among such persons leading to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, disorientation, dizziness and fatigue. “Previous trends of sunstroke fatalities have indicated that a majority of them had co-morbid conditions. Persons with medical history should avoid hot sun,” says in-charge, District Health and Medical Officer (DHM&HO), Dr L Padmaja.
Often, loss of fluid or dehydration gives rise to blood urea and formation of stones, which makes it very important for persons with chronic kidney and liver ailments keep a tab on hydration levels in their body. Extreme heat causes imbalance of sodium, potassium, electrolytes and vitamins in the body, adversely impacts the brain, a condition known as metabolic encephalopathy. It’s a broad category that describes abnormality in water, electrolytes, vitamins and other chemicals that impact brain functioning.