Hot weather is part of life in Texas. According to health experts, one of the most dangerous factors during excessively hot weather is the addition of humidity. The combination of heat and humidity results in heat stress on humans and animals by interfering with the body’s ability to cool itself through sweating. Victims of prolonged or high heat stress can develop heat cramps or heat exhaustion. If heat stress continues, the condition can progress to heat stroke and even death.
The warning signs of heat illness can be mild or severe, but all are important danger signals. The most serious heat-related conditions are heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Signs of heat exhaustion include:
- Profuse sweating
- Muscle cramps
- Nausea or vomiting
- A weak, rapid pulse
- Fast and shallow breathing
Heat exhaustion can progress into heat stroke.