Temperatures tripped the triple digit mark around the state this week and Rogers County emergency officials are advising caution for anyone having to be outside

During these long, hot summer days, heat exhaustion and heat stroke are most common among those who work outside. Symptoms for these are very similar, and both can be avoided by doing simple things.

Slow down, stay indoors if possible and drink plenty of water.

If it sounds like a prescription for dealing with hot weather — you’re right.

“Hydrate yourself every hour if you have to be outside,” Rogers County Emergency Management Director Bob Anderson said. “Don’t drink pop or coffee or anything with caffeine. It’s best to drink water or something that contains electrolytes, and eat light meals.”

Although temperatures are already reaching into the 90s before noon, Anderson said the worst heat of the day comes after 2 p.m.

“The heat worsens in the late afternoon and increases the chances for heat stroke,” he said. “Don’t leave pets or anybody in the car during these hot days.”

Knowing the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke are very important.

“Usually, by the time somebody realizes they are having a heat stroke, it’s too late,” Anderson said.

Heat stroke is the most serious heat emergency and is life-threatening. Body temperatures can rise high enough that brain damage and even death may result if the body is not cooled down quickly.

Symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke include redness of the skin, nausea, dizziness, unclear thinking and accelerated breathing. In the case of a heat stroke, the person suffering will also stop sweating. Anderson said if this is observed, call 911 immediately.

The American Red Cross offers these tips to stay cooler and avoid heat related illnesses.

•Slow down. Avoid strenuous activity. If you must do strenuous activity, do so during the coolest part of the day, which is usually between 4 a.m. and 7 a.m. in the morning.

•Stay in doors as much as possible. If air-conditioning is unavailable, stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine.

•Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing to reflect away some of the sun’s energy.

•Drink plenty of water, regularly and often. Water is the safest liquid to drink during heat emergencies.

•Avoid drinks with alcohol or caffeine in them. They can make you feel good temporarily, but they make the heat’s effects on your body worse. This is especially true about beer, which dehydrates the body.

•Eat smaller meals and more frequently. Avoid foods high in protein, which increase metabolic heat.

Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a physician.

Today’s temperatures are to reach 102 degrees, with the heat index at 113 degrees. Monday’s high temperature was 102 degrees, with a heat index of 109. Triple digit temperatures are expected to last throughout the rest of the week.

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