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There are many factors that can increase risk for hyperthermia, including:

* Dehydration

* Alcohol use

* Reduced sweating caused by medications such as diuretics, sedatives, tranquilizers and certain heart and blood pressure drugs

* High blood pressure or other health conditions that require changes in diet. People on salt-restricted diets may be at increased risk; however, salt pills should not be used without first consulting a doctor.

* Use of multiple medications. It is important, however, to continue to take prescribed medication and discuss possible problems with a physician.

* Age-related changes to the skin such as poor blood circulation and inefficient sweat production

* Heart, lung and kidney diseases, as well as any illness that causes general weakness or fever

* Being substantially overweight or underweight

Heat stroke is a life-threatening form of hyperthermia. It occurs when the body is overwhelmed by heat and unable to control its temperature. Signs and symptoms of heat stroke include a significant increase in body temperature (generally above 104 degrees Fahrenheit), changes in mental status (like confusion or combativeness), strong rapid pulse, lack of sweating, dry flushed skin, feeling faint, staggering or coma. Emergency medical attention is critical for a person with heat stroke symptoms, especially an older adult.

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