More people die during extreme heat. In the 2009 Victorian heatwave the number of deaths increased by 374 people and almost eighty percent of these were over 65 years of age.
This year, we’re expecting a long hot summer, and that could mean more deaths and illness from extreme heat.
Heat exhaustion and heatstroke are serious conditions occurring when the body’s temperature rises and the internal organs start to shut down. Symptoms of heat exhaustion range from muscle cramps, dizziness to nausea, vomiting and fainting.
The risk of heat stress is higher for people over 65 years, particularly if they are on medication.
There are things we can all do to survive the heat like drinking at least two litres of water a day, seeking out air-conditioned buildings, drawing your blinds to keep the heat out and taking cool showers.
If you know extreme heat is on the way take a moment to plan ahead or visit Better Health Channel's Survive the heat page for more information.