heat cramps such as muscle spasms fainting or near fainting heat exhaustion, which may include fatigue, weakness, reduced energy, headache, and nausea heat stroke, which may cause confusion, disorientation, loss of consciousness or seizures In cases of extreme temperatures, a fan may not provide enough cooling. Family pets may also be affected by high temperatures. They should have plenty of water available, and be kept in well ventilated areas. People with underlying health issues may see their symptoms worsen. If they experience heat-related illness symptoms they should call 8-1-1 to speak with a nurse. In an emergency situation, call 9-1-1. To beat the heat, health officials recommend that you: Nova Scotians can beat the heat this summer by keeping an eye on the temperature and protecting themselves from heat-related illness. Infants, pre-schoolers, adults 65 and older, and people with chronic conditions, such as lung or heart problems, may become sick because of high heat and humidity. Dr. Richard Gould, a medical officer of health, reminds Nova Scotians to adjust their daily activities if it is going to get too hot. “We should all monitor the weather conditions to protect ourselves from high temperatures,” said Dr. Gould. “If you’re going to be spending the day outdoors — especially if you are taking part in a sport or other vigorous activity or are vulnerable to health effects — make sure you have plenty of water and rest breaks as the temperature rises.” When the humidex exceeds 40, extra caution and rescheduling vigorous activity to a cooler time of the day should be strongly considered. The humidex tells how hot it feels for the average person. It combines temperature and humidity. Symptoms of heat-related illness can include: stay in shaded or cool air-conditioned areas drink plenty of water wear light-coloured clothing take breaks often when exercising or working outside People without access to a cool place at home or work should take advantage of air conditioned places like shopping malls, libraries, or community centres. Cooling off in a pool or area close to the ocean may also provide relief. For more heat safety tips visit www.gov.ns.ca/dhw . To find the local humidex level visit www.weatheroffice.gc.ca .