Your son is running around the kitchen wanting to help with that famous recipe, and you quickly put the pot handles to the side and notice that the oven is hot. After an intimidation, you wipe the sweat off your face and complain about the heat. Remember, then, that you will benefit from the warmer temperatures sooner, when you are at the beach. Here is the beginning of a story that may end in the emergency room.
The combination of school holidays, year-end celebrations and climate change is changing attendance at health units in December and January. There are more cases of drowning, burns, gastrointestinal disorders, and trauma. There is also a growing demand related to mental illness.
“It’s a period full of symbolism, the emotional charge is huge and we’re seeing an increase in patients who come to the emergency room because of emotional conditions. A lot of times, they come just to talk and vent. They’re in the middle-old or very old with depressive states because, well, they For example, they were not visited by relatives throughout the year,” says Claudio Isaac, coordinator of the adult emergency room at Leforte Liberdade Hospital, in Sao Paulo🇧🇷
Cases of depression are becoming more frequent at this time in the emergency rooms of the Mater Dei network, in Minas Gerais, and require a different view from the teams.
“People have an excess, like alcohol use, and they think it’s because of partying, but a deeper investigation may reveal that the episode is related to a mental disorder,” says the network’s medical director, Felipe Salvador Liguori.
The problem is that communication in the emergency room is much faster and more superficial than in counseling, and it is difficult to investigate the causes of emotional complaints. “The patient comes in looking for a welcome that we often can’t give because of the dynamics of the emergency room,” says Isaac.
The same thing can happen in situations like panic attacks. The person arrives at the scene with chest pain and shortness of breath, and the doctors check that he may have a heart attack. Except for this hypothesis, there is no structure for determining the cause of the nuisance.
In these cases, there are two possible courses: hospitalization to deepen the investigation, interdisciplinary consultation with other disciplines to confirm the diagnosis, or redirection of the investigation on an outpatient basis with the psychiatrist.
Doctors have also noticed an increase in suspected respiratory conditions COVID-19 running Minas Geraismore patients dengue fever🇧🇷 “We serve areas where dengue fever is common. With the rainy season, from December to February, we have noticed an increase in demand,” says Ligorio.
At Cristo Redentor Hospital, VA Porto Alegreis the time when the number of aids related to drowning increases, according to Francisco Zancan Paz, Technical Director of Grupo Hospitalar Conceição.
The same thing is happening in the state of Minas Gerais, echoing what the Brazilian Water Rescue Association noted in the country. According to the authority, 45% of drowning cases occur in the period from December to March. In 2020 alone, 5,818 Brazilians drowned, 70% of them in rivers and dams.
The period of holidays and festivals is also characterized by more accidents involving burns, whether due to fireworks or household accidents. “It is a period when children spend more time indoors and it is important to monitor the safety of the environment, such as avoiding leaving them near the stove and putting pot handles inside,” according to Ligório’s guides.
In the event of any type of burn, it is recommended to wash the wound with running water and not to use any other type of material without consulting the medical team. “In the emergency room, treatment is directed by the type of burn,” he says.
Doctors also highlight the high incidence of diarrhoea, linked to both the higher rotavirus circulation at this time of year and the overindulgence of partying. “The foods we prepare at this time are from winter in cold countries. They are seeds, dried fruits and fatty foods that we do not eat all year round and during this period we eat a lot. This facilitates gastroenteritis,” notes Isaac.
In addition, many people change their food routine while traveling, and exposure to new types of cuisines and foods prepared without health care can lead to toxic and infectious conditions. To avoid the problem, experts recommend checking how products are handled, and in the case of people with food intolerances, always check the list of ingredients.
Another essential aspect is to keep the body constantly hydrated. Going for hours without urinating, feeling dry mouth, dry skin and eyes, and increased fatigue are signs that it is too late to drink water.
Finally, doctors remember that the “summer project” exaggerations, where people ramp up diet and physical exercise to keep fit, also tend to end up in the emergency room.
“The person is not used to going through an intense period of activity and ends up causing an injury. We also receive major trauma cases, with accidents in waterfalls and cycling with people who are not used to walking long distances. There is folly to not noticing and not respecting the athletic or radical limit Ligorio points out.
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