What's Going Around finds plenty of sun-related ailments

Louisville, KY - By Sam Schreiber - e-mail

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Summer may bring nice weather and sunny skies, but it also brings sun and heat related illness and injury. These maladies top this week's list of What's Going Around.

A little warm weather may make for a nice day outdoors, but excessive heat can lead to a number of health issues. Among them are nausea, vomiting, dehydration, rapid breathing, confusion, and decreased sweating.

Dr. Melissa Hancock, a pediatrician in Valley Station, says that any of these symptoms require immediate emergency care. But she also says that there are a few ways to avoid these problems all together.

Dr. Hancock says to avoid heat exposure during peak sun hours, generally 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Also, drink plenty of fluids, especially water, and avoid physically strenuous activities outdoors. Babies under 6 months old should stay out of direct sunlight, and always wear a hat and lightweight cotton clothes.

Another common summer ailment is the sunburn. Dr. Jill Howell-Berg, a Clarksville, IN pediatrician, says that while light-skinned people are most susceptible, all skin types are at risk.

Dr. Howell-Berg says to treat minor sunburns with cool compresses and ibuprofen. Severe sunburns may require prescription medication.

To keep skin safe in the first place, always wear sunscreen outdoors. For best results, it should be applied 15 minutes before going out in the sun, then re-applied liberally throughout the day.

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