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Md.’s 1st Heat-Related Death Of 2013 Reported In Howard County

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HOWARD COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — A strong warning from doctors and state health officials. The heat can be dangerous, and in some cases, deadly. It follows the first confirmed heat-related death of the summer.

Gigi Barnett explains what you need to look out for.

On these days we can see the temperatures rise to the high 80s and 90s. For some people, that means beach weather. For others, this kind of weather can kill.

Soaring summer temperatures and high humidity are to blame for the state’s first heat-related death.

Doctors say it’s a Howard County man between 45 and 64-years-old who had underlying health conditions. And as the summer goes on, doctors could see more patients.

“As the humidity continues to increase, coupled with the heat, you’re going to see–will see–a lot more people who are in need of care for heat related issues,” said Dr. Waseem El-Halabi, Sinai emergency doctor.

Dr. Waseem El-Halabi is an emergency room physician at Sinai Hospital. He says it’s the young and the elderly who are most at risk.

“Those that don’t have the ability when they feel overheated to get up and to go to the sink and get a drink of water. Those who are living in areas that don’t have air conditioning,” he said.

Doctors say it’s easy to spot the early signs of heat exhaustion, which could lead to a more serious heat stroke. Look for: extreme weakness, muscle cramps, nausea and headaches.

That warning has parents no guard to drink and give plenty of water.

“We have water and apple juice and Gatorade. That’s mostly what the stroller is filled up with,” said Sophia Liskovich, parent.

“It was an early morning thing. We made sure we beat the heat by coming early in the morning,” said Marty Brodsky, parent.

Other people at high risk are those who work in the heat–landscapers, construction workers, even mail carriers. Doctors say if you drink water and get out of the heat, but still feel heat exhaustion symptoms, get to an emergency room as fast as you can.

Doctors say if you have an elderly neighbor or relative, it’s a good idea to check on them often when the temperatures rise.

Last year, 46 people died from heat-related illnesses.

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