From the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Excessive Heat Exposure Can Pose Higher Risks for Those on Psychotropic Medication or Other Substances
During this period when parts of the Nation are experiencing record high temperatures, SAMHSA is reminding everyone that these conditions can pose certain health risks to everyone—including people with mental and substance use disorders.
Exposure to excessive heat is dangerous and can lead to heatstroke, which is considered a medical emergency. Heatstroke occurs when an abnormally elevated body temperature is unable to cool itself. Internal body temperatures can rise to levels that may cause irreversible brain damage and death.
Individuals with behavioral health conditions who are taking psychotropic medications, or using certain substances such as illicit drugs and alcohol, may be at a higher risk for heatstroke and heat-related illnesses. These medications and substances can interfere with the body’s ability to regulate heat and an individual’s awareness that his or her body temperature is rising.
Visit the CDC’s Extreme Heat: A Prevention Guide To Promote Your Personal Health and Safety for information on how to prevent, recognize, and treat heat-related illnesses.