7 Signs You Are Experiencing Heat Stroke

Updated on July 14, 2020

Whether you live in a tropical country or not, there’s one fact that stays the same about summer. As nice as it might be to have some sun and to relax, it can also bring you at risk of experiencing heat exhaustion or heat stroke. This fact is precisely why no matter how much fun you’re having under the sun, you have to be cautious when it comes to hydration.  

Heatstroke happens when your body starts to overheat due to prolonged exposure in extremely hot weather conditions. Once your body goes above 104 degrees Celsius, you know that you’re in for trouble. Remember that this isn’t to be taken lightly since heat stroke has the potential of being fatal. 

That said, for your awareness and to stay safe during your summer activities, be mindful of these following symptoms of heatstroke: 

1. Hyperthermia

Hyperthermia happens when a person’s body takes in more heat than it can release, causing it to overheat. One of the most common causes of hyperthermia is heat stroke

Generally, for human beings, the dangerous point sits above 104 degrees Celsius. If left to prosper within the day, this can lead to seizures, loss of blood pressure, and death. 

Once you feel like your body is feeling too hot, you should immediately drink water and rest in a colder place. Also, you have to call your doctor right away if the following occur:

  • When you experience stiff neck, rash, and sore throat
  • A pale and sick feeling
  • Seizure
  • Weak immune system
  • Migraine or severe headache from heat 

2. Excessive Sweating

Sweating during the warm, summer months is considered normal. But, at what point should sweating be considered as a cause for concern?

Excessive sweating starts to happen when your body refuses to cool down. For example, you’ve already relaxed, move to a shady or colder place, and even drank water. Despite all these efforts, however, your body is still so hot. When this happens, you can sweat excessively. 

The common ways to distinguish regular sweating from one that’s already dangerous would:

  • You’re sweating in more than one area of your body, generally your head, feet, underarms, and hands
  • Your skin isn’t drying up
  • You’re sweating despite not moving around or exercising 

3. Altered State Of Consciousness

An altered state of consciousness occurs when a person is no longer able to respond as effectively to stimuli around them. This would include the people surrounding them and the things that occur that would’ve otherwise warranted for quick reaction time. 

When this happens, your ability to stay oriented, awake, and within your senses are limited. Because you have little control over your body as you become weaker, you need to see a doctor right away.

There are ways to determine that an individual is starting to fall within an altered state of consciousness, and these include:

  • Weakness in the arms and legs
  • Seizures
  • Sweating
  • Poor balance and falling
  • Low blood pressure

4.  Bounding Pulse

A bounding pulse refers to a situation when the heart is pounding and racing. Hence, the simplest way to determine this is when your heart is beating faster than normal.  

With a bounding pulse, do a manual count of your pulse. If you notice that it’s getting slower over a short period, then you’re still safe. However, if it doesn’t go any slower, it can be a sign of a serious problem. If this is the case, immediately visit a doctor. 

Serious complications of a bounding pulse include:

  • Tightness and pressure on your neck, jaws, and arms
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty breathing 

5. Nausea And Vomiting

If your vomiting isn’t too frequent, then you may still be fine. However, if it often happens, where you know that your body is getting weaker, then you have to take this seriously. 

Since it can severely dehydrate your body, nausea, and vomiting due to heat stroke are very serious. If you also force yourself to eat even when you’re nauseous and weak, your body may not be able to take in the food as well as it should. In worst cases, this can lead to choking. 

6. Cold, Clammy Skin

Cold and clammy skin is usually a result of excessive sweating. So, it’s safe to say that these two symptoms of heatstroke go hand-in-hand. For you to be able to relieve the clamminess of your skin, immediate medical care is called for. 

Cold and clammy skin can be due to a variety of problems, all of which are concerning your heart health, and even as a precursor to heatstroke. These include:

  • The coming of a heart attack or heart failure
  • Overheating of the body
  • Shock due to low blood volume
  • Internal bleeding
  • Low oxygen levels in the body

Clammy skin comes along with a variety of other symptoms, which will tell you that medical treatment is indeed necessary. Some of these accompanying symptoms are:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Dizziness 

7. Flushed Skin

Flushed skin is a more severe form of blushing, which is usually obvious on the face. In more severe instances, it can also include your neck and your chest. 

Flushing of the skin starts to happen when there’s dilation of blood on the blood vessels that are directly under the skin’s surface. This is a normal occurrence after your body’s temperature rises.

Other facial symptoms can occur together with flushing. These can help you determine that medical care is called for:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Blotchiness of the skin
  • Skin pimples
  • The warmness of the skin all over
  • Itchy skin 


Now that you’re aware of these symptoms, you have that increased potential of protecting your health. If you’re out and about and any of these happen, it’s best to have yourself checked as soon as possible. 

In severe instances, heatstroke can potentially damage your kidneys, brain, heart, and muscles. In the very worst-case scenario, you could die. Heatstroke as heart disease is generally preventable as long as you also know the boundaries of what to look out for.

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