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Heat Illnesses: Basic Information


  • Move child to cool place
  • Have child drink 16 ounces of fluid containing electrolytes (i.e. sports drinks) for every pound of weight lost
  • Remove sweaty clothes
  • Place ice behind child's head
  • Seek medical attention, if no improvement

Heat Stroke


  • Life-threatening medical emergency requiring immediate action
  • Body's temperature-regulating processes stop functioning
  • Left untreated, results in death due to collapse of circulatory system and damage to central nervous system
  • Until medical help arrives, key is to immediately lower elevated body temperature ("cool first, transport second")


  • No sweating
  • Dry, hot skin
  • Swollen tongue
  • Visual disturbances
  • Rapid pulse
  • Unsteady gait
  • Fainting
  • Low blood pressure
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Shock
  • Excessively high rectal temperature (over 105.8 degrees Farenheit.)


  • Call 911 
  • Remove sweaty clothes
  • Ice-water or cold-water immersion. When not feasible, immediate and continual dousing with water (either from a hose or multiple water containers) combined with fanning and continually rotating cold, wet towels on head and neck until immersive cooling can occur.