As families head outdoors during the holiday weekend, hospital emergency room personnel say they expect to see an increase in the number of people suffering from heat exhaustion and heat related illness.

“As it gets hotter outside, then the risk of heat-related illness goes up dramatically and as people don’t pay attention, we’re going to see them in the emergency department,” said Dr. Robert Swore, an emergency room physician at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak.

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And he says, as children head outside into the heat, parents need to remain aware of the risk of heat related illnesses, especially for young infants.

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“Obviously you want to make sure they’re shaded, dressed in light colors, they’re well-hydrated, those are the sorts of things that are most effective in preventing children from being affected by the heat,” said Swore.

Also at risk, says Dr. Swore, are older adults with underlying medical problems, because many medications, including diuretics and anti-depressants, affect their ability to control body temperature and can be problematic.

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