Insights > Don’t get stressed! Heat stress, that is

Don’t get stressed! Heat stress, that is


It’s 110 degrees in the shade! In the South, temperatures can reach potentially dangerous levels for anyone working outside or spending time outdoors recreationally. If you’re sweating your way through the day, here are some tips on how to recognize the dangers of heat stress and how to avoid them.

Types of heat stress:

Heat stroke is the most serious heat related disorder and occurs when the body's temperature regulation fails, and body temperature rises to critical levels. Signs and symptoms of heat stroke are confusion, irrational behavior, loss of consciousness, a lack of sweating (usually), hot, dry skin, and an abnormally high body temperature.  

Heat exhaustion signs and symptoms are headache, nausea, vertigo, weakness, thirst, and giddiness. Fortunately, this condition responds very quickly to treatment.

Heat cramps are usually caused by performing hard physical labor in a very hot environment. Cramps are usually caused by not hydrating enough.

Heat rashes are the most common problem when spending time outdoors in the extreme heat. Most of the time, the rash will disappear once you find a cool place.

What can I do?

There are a few simple steps you can follow to stay safe when spending time outdoors in the heat this summer.

  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Always keep a water bottle with you and take frequent drinks.
  • Make sure you have plenty of shade to take cover from the sun and get some relief from the heat.
  • Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
  • If working outside, take frequent breaks.
  • Sunburn affects your body’s ability to cool down and can make you dehydrated, so be sure to apply sunscreen and reapply often.
  • If you with others, watch out for each other and pay attention to the signs of heat stress.

For more safety tips on avoiding heat-related illness, visit

Lee Sabatini
Manager, Entergy New Orleans Communications