Teen Athletes Hit by Heat

by Danielle Cotterman on July 20, 2011 at 5:15 am

The hot weather continues this week which is cause for concern for upcoming high school football practices.

Two-a-day practices will begin in August for local high school teams. Medical Director of the Muskingum County Health Department, Dr. Vicki Whitacre said the youngsters practicing any sport in the heat need to stay hydrated. She suggests, at minimum, drink twice as much liquids during extreme heat that you would during a typical practice.

"And if your thirsty you are already behind," said Whitacre. "You need to drink ahead of time when you know you’re going to be in the heat, and drink afterwards too as well as during."

Whitacre explains the body will sweat in attempt to cool itself….losing a significant amount of water that will need to be replaced. She stresses eight glasses of water will not cut it, you may need gallons of water throughout the day. She said the idea is to keep sweating.

"When you quit sweating your in trouble, big trouble," said Whitacre. "Your body core temperature goes up very high, and your body can become disoriented, confused and loose consciousness."

Whitacre suggests heavy activity is done in the morning before 10 am or later in the evening. Teen athletes may require sport drinks to replace body salts during practice, but otherwise water is the key.