The summer heat is here! Be sure to stay cool this summer to avoid overheating your body.

Heat exhaustion is a heat-related illness from overexposure or overworking in a high-temperature environment, and often related to dehydration.

Signs of heat-related illnesses are excessive thirst, weakness, headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, profuse sweating or, worse yet, no sweating when you should be!

Staying hydrated is very important when exposed to the heat. The cardinal rule is to drink eight, eight- ounce glasses of water per day. But, when the heat is high, and your body is using that water to stay cool, you need more. One easy formula is to take your body weight divided by two. This equals the number of ounces you should drink in the heat.  A 200-pound man would need 100 ounces of water a day.

Anyone experiencing signs of heat exhaustion should be moved to a cool, air-conditioned place, or into the shade. Remove any tight or unnecessary clothing. Apply fans or cool towels to help cool the body.

If there is no relief in 15 minutes, or the person becomes unconscious, seek medical attention or call 9-1-1 immediately.

Stay cool, protect your skin with sunscreen, and enjoy your summer!

Randy Richman is a part-time Brookfield firefighter and paramedic, firefighting instructor and regional director for hyperbaric medicine for Shared Heath Service Inc.