Heat Related Illness and the Environment
If heat exposure exceeds the body’s ability to cool and core body temperature rises, a range of heat-related symptoms and conditions can develop. The most common heat-related illness is heat exhaustion. Heat-related symptoms range from mild heat edema and rash to heat cramps. Heat-related cramps, rash and edema are relatively minor, readily treatable conditions. These symptoms are important warning signs as heat exhaustion, heat syncope and heat stroke can be more harmful.
Any individual regardless of age, sex or health status can develop heat-related illness if exposed to environmental heat and humidity. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change suggests climate change will cause more frequent, more intense and longer heat waves.