As the “hot dome” moves eastward, how to protect yourself from the health risks caused by high temperatures
As extreme high temperature warnings still exist in most parts of western Canada and the unprecedented weather is moving eastward, experts have warned that the health of many Canadians may be threatened by soaring temperatures.
speak Nationwide, Dr. Daniel Kalla, a Vancouver emergency room doctor, said that in his career, he has recently seen more and more patients with fever-related symptoms, “more than ever before.”
He said that some people suffer from heatstroke and have symptoms such as dizziness, while others are seriously ill due to heatstroke.
“Older people, people taking certain drugs, drug users-are really at high risk,” Kara said. “Their temperature regulation system is also not working properly.”
So far, the so-called “thermal dome” has broken more than 100 high temperature records in British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon and the Northwest Territories. The village of Lytton in British Columbia also The highest temperature ever recorded in Canada Tuesday at 49.6 C.
On Tuesday, Vancouver police said they had received 65 reports of sudden deaths since the start of the heat wave, and that they were increasing, with “more casualties reported by the hour”. And the BC medical staff At least 187 ambulance calls related to heat stroke were answered over the weekend, and another 52 were related to heat stroke.
Watch | Kalla discusses heat-related cases:
Sarah Henderson, scientific director of the Environmental Health Service of the British Columbia Centers for Disease Control, said the health effects of the thermal dome will be known within a few weeks, and the data can be evaluated at that time.
“We definitely expect a significant increase in mortality associated with this high temperature,” she said, calling it “dangerously hot weather.”
The elderly, the homeless, and people with chronic diseases are at higher risk
Other medical experts agree that certain groups of people are most likely to have serious health consequences from such extreme heat.
“The elderly and the chronically ill are at the greatest risk, and there is often overlap,” said Dr. Scott Lear, Professor of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia
These chronic diseases may include heart disease, respiratory diseases and diabetes.
Hope Outreach Okanagan President Angie Lohr (Angie Lohr) said that elderly people usually do not have a vehicle to enter the cooling station. She also said that people who are homeless and addicted to drugs face challenges in using these facilities.
“The drug itself will overheat you,” she told CBC host Chris Walker on Wednesday. Liming South“Unable to move into the cooling station… [make them] Stay away from dehydration. “
People who are obese or overworked in high temperatures—whether through exercise or outdoor work like road construction—are also at greater risk.
“No one feels comfortable in such hot weather,” Kara said.
He said that if you or your loved one starts vomiting, stops urinating, feels dizzy or fainting, or has symptoms such as confusion, seizures or muscle contractions, then it is time to go to the hospital.
According to Health Canada, If you think someone has heat stroke, it is best to seek emergency help and help the person calm down by doing the following:
- Dial 911.
- Move the person to the shade.
- Apply cold water to their skin or clothing.
- Keep fanning them while you wait for help.
Prevent health problems related to high temperature
To prevent these types of health problems, staying calm is essential, and there are many strategies to do this.
Medical experts recommend looking for a cool place, not under direct sunlight. If you are outside, be sure to wear a hat, sunscreen, and light clothing to cover your skin.
Lear suggests that people should stay hydrated by drinking enough water throughout the day.
He also admitted that people’s sleep is particularly difficult now, because most homes in the Pacific Northwest do not have air conditioning, and the heat has not subsided at night.
“In fact, you might even be dehydrated when you wake up in the morning,” Lear said.
Watch | What’s behind the record high temperature:
He suggested that anyone who wants to exercise should do it in the early morning when it is still cool, or in an air-conditioned indoor space. Given the extreme heat, people can also consider skipping exercise.
“Your exercise regime does not have to be at the expense of your health,” Lear said.
Medical experts also recommend checking friends and relatives living alone, especially those considered vulnerable, such as the elderly.
Need more cooling space
From a policy perspective, Ian Mauro, executive director of the Prairie Climate Center at the University of Winnipeg, said that government officials should pay attention to the social vulnerabilities that arise during the heat wave.
“Extreme heat will not affect everyone in the same way,” he said. “If you have air-conditioning and you are in a safe place… then your situation is much better than that of people in high-rise buildings without air-conditioning.”
Mauro said that urban areas need to focus on creating spaces for people to keep cool, including investing in the development of more shaded green spaces, and making better use of splash guards and other facilities.
Similarly, Henderson emphasized that this heat wave will not be the last to affect the region, so long-term dialogue is needed on managing future extreme heat events.
“We definitely need more research on how to cool the indoor environment under these extreme conditions without mechanical intervention when possible,” she said.
Henderson questioned whether cities should consider policies to help people add air conditioning or reverse heat pumps to their homes.
“Canada should ring the alarm now,” Mauro said.
At the same time, on Tuesday, the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations Center stated that it will close three cooling stations in Kelowna and West Kelowna due to low usage.
Listen | More information about the closure of the Okanagan cooling station:
Liming South6:49Due to the extreme heat, the cities around Okanagan have opened cooling stations, but is this enough to help those who live on the street?