Gatorade was originally created as a drink that provides quick replenishment. This drink was specifically formulated to replace the lost electrolytes and has been a popular mainstream sports drink until today. Gatorade has been a favorite drink among athletes and can be used to treat heat-related disorders such as heat exhaustion.
Identifying heat exhaustion
It is important to differentiate the different types of heat disorders. Heat cramps often cause painful muscle cramps in the legs along with flushed, moist skin. As for heat exhaustion, it has similar symptoms but the skin turns pale instead of flushed along with other symptoms such as headache, nausea, dizziness and profound weakness.
Bring the individual to the emergency department at the nearest hospital right away if these symptoms are accompanied by other issues such as confusion, rapid heartbeat, absence of sweating, high fever and lethargy. These can indicate a serious form of heat disorder such as heatstroke that requires immediate emergency care.
In case of heat exhaustion, it must also be treated immediately. You have to transfer the individual to a cool place and remove excess clothing. Provide water or sports beverage such as Gatorade to drink.
Using Gatorade for replenishment of fluids
There are three Gatorade products available in the market – Performance Series, Propel Fitness Water and Thirst Quencher. The Thirst Quencher is designed to replace lost fluids and electrolytes of average individuals while the Performance Series is specifically for rehydration and can cater to the needs of high-performance athletes. As for the Propel Fitness Water, it is mainly used for rehydration that has flavor.
If you are going to provide Gatorade to an individual suffering from heat exhaustion, make sure that it is cool, not cold. The objective is to lower down the body temperature by using cool compresses and consumption of liquids. If cold liquids are given, it will increase the muscle cramps and nausea as well as trigger vomiting.
You can replenish the electrolytes that are lost through sweating by quickly encouraging the individual to take small sips of Gatorade. Take note that Gatorade has a sweet flavor that is not appealing to some individuals. If this is the case, the Proper Fitness variety can be used. Even though it does not contain the same level of minerals, it has higher vitamin content if compared to regular water.
Preventing heat exhaustion
Heat exhaustion can be prevented by staying out of heat when outdoors. It is important to wear appropriate gear such as a hat or umbrella when going outside. Wear loose-fitting and light-colored clothes to minimize the heat. If possible, try to avoid going outdoors during noontime where the rays of the sun are severe.
If the symptoms of heat exhaustion start to manifest, it is important to transfer the individual to a cool place and provide fluids to drink such as Gatorade.