Health & Wellbeing Newsletter – January 2021

Health & Wellbeing Newsletter – January 2021


 Heat kills more Australians than any natural disaster 

  • Extreme heat can affect anybody. 
  • Heat can cause illnesses such as heat cramps and heat exhaustion which can lead to the life-threatening condition, heatstroke. Heatstroke is fatal in up to 80% of cases. 
  • Those most at risk are older people, young children and people with a medical condition. 

Effects of heat on the body 

Watch this video to learn how extreme heat can impact the body: 

Know the symptoms of heat-related illness 

Heat cramps 


  • Muscle pains 
  • Spasms in the abdomen, arms or legs 

What to do: 

  • Stop activity and sit quietly in a cool place 
  • Drink cool water 
  • Rest a few hours before returning to activity 
  • See a doctor if cramps persist

Heat exhaustion 


  • Pale complexion and sweating 
  • Rapid heart rate 
  • Muscle cramps, weakness 
  • Dizziness, headache 
  • Nausea, vomiting 
  • Fainting 

What to do: 

  • Go to a cool area and lie down 
  • Fan if possible 
  • Drink cool water if not vomiting 
  • Remove outer clothing 
  • Wet skin with cool water or wet cloths 
  • See a doctor 

Heat stroke 

Heat stroke is a life-threatening emergency – call 000 


  • Same symptoms as heat exhaustion except sweating stops 
  • Mental condition worsens, confusion 
  • Seizure 
  • Stroke-like symptoms or collapsing 
  • Unconsciousness 

What to do: 

  • Call an ambulance – phone 000 
  • Get the person to a cool area and lay them down 
  • Remove clothing 
  • Wet skin with water, fanning continuously 
  • Position an unconscious person on their side and clear their airway 

Survive the heat this summer with these five simple tips 

Drink plenty of water – Even if you don’t feel thirsty, drink water. Take a bottle with you always. 

Never leave anyone in a car – Hot cars kill! Never leave kids, older people or pets in cars. The temperature inside a parked car can double within minutes. 

Stay somewhere cool – Seek air conditioned buildings, draw your blinds, use a fan, take cool showers and dress in light and loose clothing made from natural fabrics. 

Plan ahead – Schedule activities in the coolest part of the day and avoid exercising in the heat. If you must go out, wear a hat and sunscreen and take a bottle of water with you. 

Check in on others – Look after those most at risk in the heat e.g. your neighbour living alone, older people, the young, people with a medical condition and don’t forget your pets. 

Download PDF Version of our January Health & Wellbeing Newsletter

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