What Happens During a Heat Stroke


During summer, the risk of a heat stroke is significantly increased. If you’re planning to be outdoors during the hottest time of the year, it’s important to know the signs of a heat stroke and what exactly happens to your body during one.

What Is A Heat Stroke?

A heat stroke, a form of hyperthermia, occurs when your body temperature rises abnormally high (104 degrees Fahrenheit or higher) and is accompanied by other physical symptoms. It’s not uncommon for a heat stroke to be confused for heat cramps or heat exhaustion, two other forms of hyperthermia; however, these are much less severe. You may also hear a heat stroke referred to as a sun stroke. Heat strokes should not be confused with an actual stroke. The term “stroke” is normally used to describe a decreased oxygen flow to the brain.

How Do You Identify A Heat Stroke?

Many people misidentify heat strokes as heart attacks since the symptoms are similar. Symptoms of a heat stroke may occur quickly and without warning. They include high body temperature, flushed skin, increased pulse, trouble breathing, confusion, agitation, seizure and more.

How Can You Prevent A Heat Stroke?

If possible, avoid physical activity in hot weather. If physical activity is unavoidable, stay hydrated and take frequent breaks. Loose, lightweight clothing and hats can help keep you cool. Never leave infants, children or pets unattended in a car that’s not in use as this can lead quickly to a heat stroke or even death.

If you believe you are suffering from a heat stroke, it’s imperative you seek medical attention immediately. At Denton Regional Urgent Care, we have physicians that are board-eligible in family medicine or emergency medicine. We offer convenient access to the expert care you need right when you need it, even after hours or on the weekend as well.

Disclaimer: Patients’ health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you.