How to Help Your Kids Deal With Hot School Days

by James Hubbard, MD, MPH When I think of school starting, I still imagine red and orange leaves and cool temperatures; it wasn’t that long ago that we thought of fall as schooltime. Not so today. Many kids in the United States are meeting their new teachers right now, in early August—one of the hottest months of the year. If you have children, do they know how to deal with the heat on their own, on the playground, sports field, or school bus? […]

By | August 11th, 2015|Children, Hot, Weather|2 Comments

My 15 Ultimate Beat-the-Heat Tips (Bet You Haven’t Heard Them All)

by James Hubbard, MD, MPH In the Deep South right now, it’s about heat wave time, otherwise known as the season of year when you step outside and right into a sauna. I know because I grew up in Mississippi. If you also grew up in an area that gets really hot, you may think you know everything there is to know to beat the heat. But you haven’t read this post! I bet I can surprise you—at least once? Even people used to working in the heat all day can suffer dangerously come that first heat wave—when the temperature and humidity suddenly soars 5–10 degrees or hotter. And imagine having to be outside after a disaster or while stranded in the wilderness, with no chance for air conditioning. Here are some Survival Doctor tips, facts, answers and more—all to help you beat the heat. […]

By | May 27th, 2014|Hot, Weather|29 Comments

Pop Quiz: Do You Know How to Survive the Heat?

by James Hubbard, MD, MPH   First question: What natural phenomenon kills more people in the United States than all other disasters combined? […]

By | May 29th, 2013|Hot, Weather|8 Comments

What to Do for Heatstroke When You Can’t Get Help

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H. Many years ago, before many of you were born, I trained at a large Dallas hospital. In the summers, the ambulances carried tubs of ice, and if they picked up someone with probable heatstroke, they’d start to ice them then and there. I don’t know if they still do that, but heatstroke continues to be an emergency, killing hundreds each year and leaving many more disabled. And cooling remains the top priority in treatment. Heatstroke Warning Signs In order to know what to do, you need to be able to recognize the warning signs of heatstroke (also called sunstroke). With heatstroke your vital organs shut down. Many people even stop sweating. It’s like your body has given up (or burned out). One of the first organs that shows damage is the brain. Therefore, many of the signs and symptoms of heatstroke are related to brain function, such as: […]

By | May 29th, 2012|Hot, Weather|11 Comments

Deadlier Than Natural Disasters: How to Prevent Heatstroke

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at the period between 1979 and 2003 and found that more people died from heatstroke than from hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods, and earthquakes combined. And most heatstroke deaths are so preventable. In my last post, I suggested 10 ways to cope with the heat until you can get acclimated. That’s a good start to preventing heatstroke. But some of us are still going to get too hot. The youngest and oldest, the chronically ill, and those who work outside are especially at risk. To Prevent Heatstroke, You Must … Recognize Heat Exhaustion The good news is heatstroke doesn’t just come out of the blue. It’s one problem in a spectrum of heat-related illnesses. First comes heat exhaustion. If you heed its warnings and do the right things, you can prevent what’s sure to follow otherwise—the potentially deadly heatstroke. […]

By | May 24th, 2012|Hot, Weather|26 Comments