Heat Exhaustion in the Workplace

There are many occupations where employees are affected by Heat Exhaustion in the workplace, which can be a result of climate, engaging in moderate to strenuous physical conditions, confined spaces making them vulnerable to dehydration (HEAT EXHAUSTION).

Dehydration occurs when the body doesn't have enough water and other fluids to carry out its normal functions.  If lost fluid is not replaced, the person may suffer serious consequences.

Signs and symptoms of mild to moderate dehydration are:-

-   decreased urine output or dark yellow urine

-   sweating

-   fatigue and weakness

-   dry mouth and increased thirst

-   headache

-   muscle cramping

-   poor mental and physical performance

-   dizziness

General Management of Heat Exhaustion

Immediately get the casualty in a cool/shady area, lie down and loosen restrictive clothing around neck, waist and raise legs slightly.

If the casualty is alert and conscious give small amounts of cool water or an electrolyte replacement drink.   If the casualty is nauseated or vomiting give ice cubes to suck on.  (Please Note:  Do not give salt tablets or salt in fluid as this may cause further complications.)

If muscle cramps occur gently stretch the affected limb to ease the pain.

If the casualty is not fully conscious or unconscious please them on their side in the recovery position and immediately call for an ambulance (000 or Mobile Phone 112).


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