Getting too hot can make you sick. You can become ill from the heat if your body can't compensate for it and properly cool you off. Heat exposure can even kill you: it caused 7,233 heat-related deaths in the United States from 1999 to 2009.
Here are some facts about which people are at greatest risk for heat-related illness and what protective actions to take to prevent illness or death:
People who are at highest risk are the elderly, the very young, and people with chronic diseases or mental illness.
But even young and healthy people can get sick from the heat if they participate in strenuous physical activities during hot weather.
Air-conditioning is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death. If a home is not air-conditioned, people can reduce their risk for heat-related illness by spending time in public facilities that are air-conditioned.