Heat-Related Illnesses - Home Treatment
If your child is
dehydrated, see the topic
Dehydration for information about home treatment.
Heat syncope (fainting) usually does not last long and
improves when you lie down to a flat position. It is helpful to lie in a cooler
Heat edema (swelling) is treated with
rest and by elevating your legs. If you are standing for a long time in a hot
environment, flex your leg muscles often so that blood does not pool in your
lower legs, which can lead to heat edema and fainting.
Heat cramps are
treated by getting out of the heat and replacing fluids and salt. If you are
not on a salt- (sodium-) restricted diet, eat a little more salt, such as a few
nuts or pretzels. Do not use salt tablets, because they
are absorbed slowly and can cause irritation of the stomach. Try massaging and
stretching your cramped muscles.
Heat rash (prickly heat ) usually
gets better and goes away without treatment.
Antihistamines may help if you are having problems
with itching. Keep areas clean and dry to help prevent a skin infection. Do not
use baby powder while a rash is present. The powder can build up in the skin
creases and hold moisture, allowing the growth of bacteria that may cause
infection. Dress in as few clothes as possible during hot weather. Keep your
home, especially sleeping areas, cool.
Symptoms to watch for during home treatment
Call your doctor if any of the following occur during home
- A seizure occurs.
- Decreased mental
- Shortness of breath develops.
- Symptoms become more severe or frequent.