Beating the heat for the holiday weekend

Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 11:43 PM CDT
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Temperatures are expected to top out in the high 90′s in parts of Texoma this weekend.

For some people, enjoying the Fourth of July outside shouldn’t be a problem, said Dr. David Hoang of the Texoma Medical Center. But for adults with some pre-existing and underlying health conditions, like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or asthma, the time spent outside in the heat should be limited.

“Being out there (with those type of underlying conditions) when it’s as humid as it is it could adversely affect them,” Hoang said.

Hoang said for people with congestive heart failure, among other underlying conditions, could be affected by even milder temperatures than are expected for this weekend.

He said if you start experiencing an accelerated heart rate, irregular sweating, dizziness, headache, nausea or vomiting it could be the sign of a heat stroke.

Staying safe in the heat means staying hydrated and Hoang suggests wearing light-colored, loose-fitting clothing even packing a handheld fan if you have one to stay cool.

He said masks are still a must with COVID-19 still rapidly spreading across the country because they will keep germs from spreading and “(they) keep the moisture in while you’re breathing for your lungs and your mouth.”

He said gloves are optional if people wash their hands frequently.

Before making your plans to watch fireworks outside, Hoang said checking the wet bulb index temperature, or the temperature a thermometer reads when covered by a damp cloth, will help you factor in humidity as well.

“That will tell you how long you should be out there before seeking shade,” Hoang said. “So it all depends on the temperature and humidity together.”

Hoang said if you do plan to watch fireworks outside to drink plenty of fluids and eat a good meal several hours before going outside, and bring ice and chilled refreshments when you’re out there.

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