Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 42, Tuesday April 26, 2005





The heat stroke

Exhausted! The summer has been exceptionally merciless to us as if the brutal scorching rays of the sun are determined to show us a glimpse of hell. The body gets worn out very easily. The constant sweating dismisses all the efforts of cooling down and in the end, a sickening feeling greets us with the promise of more. It is often that we hear of people getting sick due to exposure to high temperature. This condition is referred to as a 'heat stroke', which is the rise of body heat following exposure to very high environmental temperature. It is a kind of heat illness relating to the body's inability to cope up with heat. But heat stroke is the most severe form of heat related illnesses as body temperature higher than 41.1C (106F), resulting from heat stroke, is associated with neurological dysfunction.

During the hot weather, if a person is not properly equipped with hydration or proper clothing, a heat stroke may develop. Although heat stroke occurs in hot weather, there are other factors involved. These are, non-acclimatization to high temperatures, pre-existing illness with fever, high humidity, obesity, diabetes, alcoholism, excessive muscular activity and administration of sweat inhibiting drugs. There are several indications of heat stroke symptoms in a person. Typically the patient's temperature exceeds 41 C. The skin of the affected person is hot and dry and breathing rate is high, usually shallow and intermittent. The pupils may become fixed, dilated, pinpoint or normal. The brain is eventually affected resulting in restlessness, disorientation, confusion, convulsion, headaches, and dizziness and even coma. Bleeding from nose may be present along with a strong and rapid pulse. The blood pressure usually stays normal but low blood pressure will indicate a more serious life-threatening situation called shock. In this situation the blood circulation of the body is reduced, ultimately resulting in death.

There are two forms of heat stroke. These are, Exertional heatstroke (EHS) and classic Nonexertional heatstroke (NEHS). EHS generally occurs in young individuals like athletes, firefighters and military personnel who engage in strenuous physical activity for a prolonged period of time in a hot environment. The common symptoms of EHS are abdominal and muscular cramping, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, and weakness along with occasional loss of consciousness. NEHS occurs during episodes of prolonged elevations in ambient temperature and generally effects people like elderly persons, individuals who are chronically ill, and infants. The symptoms of NEHS include hallucinations, seizures, cranial nerve abnormalities, cerebella dysfunction, irritability to delusions, irrational behaviour and even coma.

Mortality from heatstroke are related to the duration of the temperature elevation. The mortality rate may be as high as 80% if the therapy is delayed. Full recovery has been observed in patients with temperatures as high as 46C and death has occurred in patients with much lower temperatures. But temperatures that exceed 106F or 41C generally are catastrophic and require immediate aggressive therapy. Considering the same risk factors and same environmental conditions, heatstroke affects both genders equally. But infants, children and elderly persons have a higher incidence of heatstroke than young, healthy adults.

Since heatstroke is a medical emergency, the rapid reduction of the core body temperature is the basis of treatment. Once heatstroke is suspected, cooling must begin immediately and must be continued during the patient's resuscitation. Removal of restrictive clothing and spraying water on the body, covering the patient with ice water-soaked sheets or placing ice packs on the groin may reduce the patient's temperature significantly. If the patient starts to shiver, the cooling process should be slowed, as shivering will increase the core temperature of the body. Temperature should be taken approximately in every 10 minutes to avoid a continued temperature drop, which could result in hypothermia. Patients diagnosed with EHS and NEHS should be admitted to the hospital for at least 48 hours to monitor for complications. However, since it is a medical emergency it is best to transport the victim to a hospital as soon as possible.

But precaution is always better than cure. There are a few steps out there, which could help us a great deal in surviving the scorching summer days. And these involve remaining in shaded areas as much as possible, avoiding carbonated, alcoholic or caffeine containing liquids, trying not to over exert oneself so as to increase the body's temperature to harmful levels, wearing light coloured and slightly loose fitting clothes and of course, drinking lots of fluids like water and juice.

By Obaidur Rahman

Check it out

Celebrating motherhood at Rong

Mother's Day is around the bend. Show your mom you care by getting her one of Rong's Mother's Day Special saris. Rong is celebrating this special occasion with a 10% discount for students (which may only be availed upon producing a valid ID card), and a special line of saris, blouse pieces, dupattas, fotuas, punjabis and T-shirts.

New international quality toothpaste Everyday

Anfords Bangladesh, Ltd launched new international quality toothpaste Everyday to provide complete oral care for all. Enriched with fluoride, new Everyday toothpaste brings sparkling whiteness to teeth. Regular use provides long-lasting protection from cavities and keeps the gums healthy and strong. It has a pleasant flavour that leaves the mouth feeling fresh. Everyday toothpaste is now available throughout the country in two convenient sizes. The price of a 100gm Everyday pack is Tk 20, while a 200gm pack costs Tk 38.
-LS Desk

A bit of this...A Bit of that
BY Shirley Momen
The 'Yes' Syndrome
To be or not to be a 'Yes' person is the question, a dilemma that we have to face at least once in a lifetime. Those with stronger personalities can deal with it. They are able to keep their priorities straight. However, those who are not, e.g. yours truly, succumb to external pressure. By now, everybody and any body who is reading this article must be in a quandary. What is a 'Yes' person?
You know you are a 'Yes' person when:
1.You want everybody to think you are 'nice', which is crucial to your identity,
2.You worry that you might hurt others' feelings if you say the 'Truth' or 'No'
3.You believe that if you do enough for others, they will do the same for you without
being asked…etc.
Hulloo readers. Welcome to the real world! Please wake up and smell the coffee. These things don't happen in real life. Even though , two out of five people are 'yes' people, they always get the short end of the stick. But never fear….help is here.
People pleasing can be an obsession that can thankfully be cured depending on how much you want it. A lot of people feel a desire for others to like them so much that it overrides
their needs and wants. In the end, this 'people pleasing' obsession leaves them either frustrated, angry or in the extreme case--guilty.
Over and over again, statistics show that it is more women than men who suffer from this horrible syndrome. When they do try to break out of it, they feel that if they stop trying to please and stand up for their own rights, they will end up alone with no family, friends or life. People, unfortunately, do take advantage of the givers and show their unwillingness to give credit for their efforts.
People pleasing actually comes from a constant need to prove to yourself that you are a 'superman or woman'. I speak from experience. Sometimes, I felt 'LOSER' engraved on my forehead. I felt if I didn't please the people around me, their disapproval would terminate me entirely.
But not to fear, help is here. I have figured a way out of this miserable condition, which provides nothing but anxiety, stress and tension. Peaceful co-existence is possible even with a 'No.'
1.Make a list of things to do which primarily include your spouse and your family
2. Finally, the most important thing….give time to yourself.
It is of the utmost importance that you discover yourself. You might find talents hidden in you, of which you had no knowledge. It is of the utmost importance to give yourself time to rejuvenate. Be it prayers, be it reading a book or even sitting beside a window and enjoying a little solitude, it promises to do wonders for the tortured soul. You must take care of yourself in order to help others.
3.The final way to deal with the 'People Pleasing Syndrome' is, get in the habit of saying,
'Let me think about it' or 'let me see what I can do' instead of saying 'No' outright.
Go over your decision carefully. If it is feasible, do it or if not, regret politely.
If your family and friends care about you, they will understand…if they don't…well bully for them. They just missed out on a great person like you.
Trust me, I know.



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