Heat Hostility

Heat is the most fatal form of weather, especially in Arizona, and more heat-related deaths have been reported than hurricane, tornadoes, and floods combined, according to 12News.

Meghan Tuzzolino, Columnist

With record-breaking, triple-digit weather already occurring in May, it is safe to say that the heat can be a serious issue. In severe cases, heat and the sun in general can result in heat stroke, dehydration, and even skin cancer. However, many citizens that live in hotter areas tend to slack off in protective measures that can prevent these temperature side effects. Not applying sunscreen, consuming sugary drinks and coffee rather than water, and spending too much time in the direct heat can all hurt people throughout the summer.

Arizona residents are thought to be less affected by the extreme heat since it is more common. According to 12 News, Arizona standards for excessive heat warnings have higher temperatures than in other states. The truth is that it affects us just as much, and our lives are at an even higher risk because of the extreme temperatures.

That being said, one of the most common heat-related illnesses is heat stroke, which is much different than heat exhaustion, and has a much different effect on anyone who is unlucky enough to become a victim. The differences include lack of sweating, despite the heat, cramps, nausea, muscle weakness, and red, dry skin. While heat exhaustion is simply a much less severe form of the same symptoms, it can progress to a heat stroke if not properly treated.

Over 100 people have died all around the country from heat-related causes just last year alone states CBS, which shows that it is not just Arizona dealing with the effects that comes with sky-rocketing temperatures. The majority of these fatalities had more than just heat as a factor though; many of these situations were started with a unwise or poorly thought through decision, such as ignoring many suggestions or guidelines put in place by health care specialists to avoid accidents such as these.

Nonetheless, the heat is not a huge issue if you make good choices. Planning your time in the sun wisley, choosing a time with the least amount of direct sunlight (anytime before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m.), staying hydrated, wearing a hat, sunglasses, or long clothing, and reapplying sunscreen frequently are all good habits that can prevent heat-caused incidents from occurring. In Arizona particularly, hot summers take up a large portion of the year, so starting healthy habits such as the ones listed above can help you prepare for an extreme summer.