Warning signs of a heat stroke

Warning signs of a heat stroke
Photo: Collected

With record breaking heat waves being experienced all over the world, heat stroke is a very real risk that many of us will face even without realising. A heatstroke, also called a sun stroke, is the most serious form of harm caused by exposure to extreme heat, usually indicated by a core body temperature of 104°C. But there are warning signs of a heatstroke in the making, and we can all look out for the following symptoms to help avoid it for ourselves and prevent it in the people around you.

Extreme headache  

Prolonged exposure to too much heat often causes headaches, and can also trigger people's migraines.

Extreme thirst, dehydration, sweating   

With the approaching sun stroke, the affected can feel extreme thirst, as well as dehydrated and clammy. The body produces excessive sweat in a bid to cool itself down.

Rapid heartrate

During the presentation of a heat stroke, a person can experience faster than normal pulse, and feel their veins throbbing. 


Shortness of breath and rapid heavy breathing are also symptoms of a heatstroke.


The headache, fast pulse, and lack of oxygen from hyperventilation can make the person feel nauseated.

Irritability, confusion or delirium

Prolonged exposure to heat can cause irritability, make people feel angry, irrational, and even delirious. 

Slurred speech

Another manifestation of an approaching heatstroke is slurred speech, where the person's word become incoherent and garbled.

Muscle cramps

One of the earlier and less noticed symptom of sun stroke is muscle cramps, which could appear to be random muscle pain or cramps.

Weakness and fainting

Overheating of the body makes it work more than normal, creating more fatigue and weakness, and can also lead to fainting.

No sweating

One counterintuitive symptom of a heat stroke is no sweating despite the heat. It usually indicates that the body has lost too much of its water to make any more sweat, or its natural cooling mechanism is now failing.

As exposure to heat becomes unavoidable for many, it is advisable to seek shade whenever possible, as well as stay hydrated consciously while staying away from artificial sugary drinks, to stay safe from the pitfalls of a sunstroke. 


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