Heat ex­haus­tion should be avoided while fast­ing

Pakistan Observer - - SPORTS -

HEAT ex­haus­tion must be avoided par­tic­u­larly by those who are fast ing in the holy month of Ra­mazan in the ex­ist­ing se­vere heat spell as its com­pli­ca­tions may cause dam­age to the brain and other vi­tal or­gans of the body and even can cause death.

Ac­cord­ing to a num­ber of health ex­perts, the heat ex­haus­tion if not man­aged prop­erly in time may lead to se­ri­ous lifethreat­en­ing con­di­tions in­clud­ing heat stroke. Heat ex­haus­tion is ei­ther caused by the de­fi­ciency of wa­ter or the de­fi­ciency of es­sen­tial salts in the body and peo­ple un­der the fast are more prone to con­tract the health threat par­tic­u­larly in the ex­ist­ing se­vere heat spells.

Peo­ple who are fast­ing must take ex­tra­or­di­nary mea­sures to avoid heat ex­haus­tion and should be aware of the signs and symp­toms of the threat so that they would be able to man­age the prob­lem well in time, say ex­perts. Heat ex­haus­tion is of­ten as­so­ci­ated with de­hy­dra­tion and can be avoided by avoid­ing ex­po­sure to ex­treme tem­per­a­tures.

Stud­ies re­veal that the symp­toms of heat ex­haus­tion caused by de­fi­ciency of wa­ter in­clude ex­ces­sive thirst, headache, loss of con­scious­ness and weak­ness in the body while the cases of heat ex­haus­tion due to de­fi­ciency of cer­tain salts in the body ex­pe­ri­ence mus­cle cramps, nau­sea, vom­it­ing and dizzi­ness. The symp­toms may be se­vere enough to re­quire hos­pi­tal­iza­tion, es­pe­cially in el­derly.

Health ex­perts sug­gest that in case of ap­pear­ance of such signs and symp­toms, the pa­tient must break open the fast and should be given plenty of flu­ids to bal­ance elec­trolytes in the body.

It is time to cre­ate aware­ness among public on im­por­tance of im­me­di­ate treat­ment in case of de­vel­op­ing signs and symp­toms of heat ex­haus­tion par­tic­u­larly among those who are un­der the fast. Con­fu­sion, dark-coloured urine, pale skin, faint­ing, pro­fuse sweat­ing and rapid heart­beat are also symp­toms of heat ex­haus­tion and should not be taken non-se­ri­ous, said an health ex­pert.

Talk­ing of first aid treat­ment, he said a pa­tient should be given plenty of flu­ids with­out caf­feine. Spong­ing with cool wa­ter, bath, re­moval of tight and un­nec­es­sary cloth­ing and ap­pli­ca­tion of cool­ing mea­sures like fan or ice towel also helps man­ag­ing the threat, he said. He added that if the first aid treat­ment does not work, a pa­tient should be taken to the near­est health­care fa­cil­ity for treat­ment as delay in man­age­ment can cause se­vere com­pli­ca­tions.

Health ex­perts fur­ther sug­gest that to avoid heat ex­haus­tion, in­di­vid­u­als par­tic­u­larly those who are un­der the fast should not go out and spend long hours un­nec­es­sar­ily un­der the sun at day­time.

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