Temperatures in the 90s have hit Iowa again, making outdoor activities a potentially dangerous proposition. Emergency-room doctor Tracy Bailey at Mercy hospital in Des Moines says there are ways to prepare yourself.He has a couple of recommendations: no large meals for four hours before an outdoor event, and drink plenty of water or sport drinks beforehand to “pre-hydrate” yourself. There’s been debate over those specially formulated drinks like Gator-Aid since they first appeared, and Dr. Bailey says they have their place. If you’re working out in the heat more than an hour, he says the electrolyte solution’s a good thing, but for less than that time you can just drink water. The doctor also recommends packing some zip-style plastic bags of ice.If you get overheated, tired or crampy, put the ice on neck or groin areas where large blood vessels are close to the skin. Overwhelming weakness or tiredness are heat-stroke warnings you should heed, and go rest and cool off, says the doctor. Bailey says if you get confused or disoriented, or have symptoms like chest pain, it’s time to get to the ER.
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