W.B.C.S. Main 2018 Question Answer – Physiology – Heat Stress And Heat Strain.
WBCS ২০১৮ মেইনস প্রশ্নের উত্তর – দেহতত্ব – তাপ চাপ এবং তাপ স্ট্রেন।
Extreme heat can affect anybody. Those most at risk are older people, young children and people with a medical condition.
Heat stress occurs when our body is unable to cool itself enough to maintain a healthy temperature. Normally, the body cools itself by sweating, but sometimes sweating isn’t enough and the body temperature keeps rising.
Heat-related illness can range from mild conditions such as a rash or cramps to very serious conditions such as heatstroke, which can kill.
Overexertion in hot weather, sun or bushfire exposure, and exercising or working in hot, poorly ventilated or confined areas can increase your risk of heat stress. Heat can also make an existing medical condition worse, for example heart disease.
People most at risk of heat-related illness
Anyone can suffer from heat-related illness, but those most at risk are:
People over 65 years, particularly those living alone or without air conditioning
Babies and young children
Pregnant and nursing mothers
People who are physically unwell, especially with heart disease, high blood pressure or lung disease
People on medications for mental illness.
Elderly people are more prone to heat stress than younger people because their body may not adjust well to sudden or prolonged temperature change. They are also more likely to have a chronic medical condition and be taking medication that may interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature.
Causes of heat stress and heat-related illness
There are many factors which can cause heat stress and heat-related illness, including:
Dehydration – to keep healthy, our body temperature needs to stay around 37°C. The body cools itself by sweating, which normally accounts for 70 to 80 per cent of the body’s heat loss. If a person becomes dehydrated, they don’t sweat as much and their body temperature keeps rising.
Lack of airflow – working in hot, poorly ventilated or confined areas.
Sun exposure – especially on hot days, between 11am and 3pm.
Hot and crowded conditions – people attending large events (concerts, dance parties or sporting events) in hot or crowded conditions may also experience heat stress that can result in illness.
Bushfires – exposure to radiant heat from bushfires can cause rapid dehydration and heat-related illness. Bushfires usually occur when the temperature is high, which adds to the risk.
Symptoms of heat-related illness
It is important to know the signs and symptoms of heat exposure and how you should respond. Symptoms vary according to the type of heat-related illness. Babies and young children may show signs of restlessness or irritability and have fewer wet nappies. Older people may become lightheaded, confused, weak or faint.
Some heat-related illness and common symptoms include
Deterioration in existing medical conditions – this is the most common health problem of heat stress.
Heat rash – sometimes called ‘prickly heat’, this is a skin irritation caused by excessive sweating. It can occur at any age, but is most common in young children. It looks like a red cluster of pimples or small blisters. It is most likely to occur on the neck and upper chest, in the groin, under the breasts and in the elbow creases.
Heat cramps – these include muscle pains or spasms, usually in the abdomen, arms or legs. They may occur after strenuous activity in a hot environment, when the body gets depleted of salt and water. They may also be a symptom of heat exhaustion.
Dizziness and fainting – heat-related dizziness and fainting results from reduced blood flow to the brain. Heat causes an increase in blood flow to the skin and pooling of blood in the legs, which can lead to a sudden drop in blood pressure. There can be a feeling of light-headedness before fainting occurs.
Heat exhaustion – this is a serious condition that can develop into heatstroke. It occurs when excessive sweating in a hot environment reduces the blood volume. Warning signs may include paleness and sweating, rapid heart rate, muscle cramps (usually in the abdomen, arms or legs), headache, nausea and vomiting, dizziness or fainting.
Heatstroke – this is a medical emergency and requires urgent attention. Heatstroke occurs when the core body temperature rises above 40.5 °C and the body’s internal systems start to shut down. Many organs in the body suffer damage and the body temperature must be reduced quickly. Most people will have profound central nervous system changes such as delirium, coma and seizures. The person may stagger, appear confused, have a fit or collapse and become unconscious. As well as effects on the nervous system, there can be liver, kidney, muscle and heart damage.
In spite of increased environmental cold stress, heat strain is possible also in a cold environment. The body heat balance depends on three factors: environmental thermal conditions, metabolic heat production and thermal insulation of clothing and other protective garments. As physical exercise may increase metabolic heat production from rest values by ten times or even more, the required thermal insulation of clothing may vary accordingly. However, in most outdoor work, and often in indoor cold work, too, the thermal insulation of clothing is impractical, difficult or impossible to adjust according to the changes in physical activity. This is especially true with whole body covering garments like chemical protective clothing. As a result of this imbalance, heat strain may develop. In cold all the signs of heat strain (core temperature above 38 degrees C, warm or hot thermal sensations, increased cutaneous circulation and sweating) may not be present at the same time. Heat strain in cold may be whole body heat strain or related only to torso or core temperature. Together with heat strain in torso or body core, there can be at the same time even cold strain in peripheral parts and/or superficial layers of the body. In cold environment both the preservation of insulation and facilitation of heat loss are important. Development of clothing design is still needed to allow easy adjustments of thermal insulation.
Heat exhaustion is a heat-related illness that can occur after you’ve been exposed to high temperatures, and it often is accompanied by dehydration.There are two types of heat exhaustion:
Water depletion. Signs include excessive thirst, weakness, headache, and loss of consciousness.
Salt depletion. Signs include nausea and vomiting, muscle cramps, and dizziness.
Although heat exhaustion isn’t as serious as heat stroke, it isn’t something to be taken lightly. Without proper intervention, heat exhaustion can progress to heat stroke, which can damage the brain and other vital organs, and even cause death.
Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion
The most common signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
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