Heat Exhaustion or Heat Stroke: Know the Differences

It’s not your imagination. We’re in the midst of a HOT summer. Heat related illnesses like dehydration, heat exhaustion or heat stroke should not be taken lightly, and affect many. Most vulnerable are babies, the elderly,the sick and the immobile, and of course those without air conditioning.

What are the differences between heat exhaustion and heat stroke?

The distinctions can be the difference between life and death.

Heat exhaustion is a result of being exposed to high temperatures and not being properly hydrated. Symptoms can include:

  • Confusion
  • Dehydration
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Muscle aches
  • Sweating
  • Rapid heartbeat

Taking a cool bath, moving to an air conditioned area and drinking hydrating fluids can often relieve heat exhaustion.

Without proper attention, heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke. Signs of heat stroke include:

  • Altered mental state or confusion
  • High temperature of over 103 degrees
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Warm, DRY  skin
  • Rapid breathing
  • Throbbing headache
  • Fainting
  • Racing heartbeat/rapid pulse

Heat stroke is a medical emergency. It can kill or cause brain and organ damage. Call 911 immediately if you suspect someone has heat stroke or go to the nearest emergency room.

If, on the other hand you believe you are experiencing dehydration or heat exhaustion, we are happy to treat that here at AFC Urgent Care West Hartford with no appointment necessary.

We are open 7 days a week. 1030 Boulevard, West Hartford, CT. or visit our sister urgent care centers: 135 East Main Street, New Britain or in Vernon at 179 Talcottville Road, Vernon, CT



3700 Cahaba Beach Road Birmingham, AL 35242

Our Mission and Values:

Our mission is to provide the best healthcare possible in a kind and caring environment, in an economical manner, while respecting the rights of all of our patients, at times and locations convenient to the patient.

Scroll to Top