How to beat the heat this 4th of July weekend

Dehydration is a major concern when people mix alcohol and hours of activity in the sun.
Record high temperatures approach for the Fourth of July holiday weekend
Published: Jun. 30, 2023 at 8:12 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - As your family gears up for the 4th of July weekend, rising temperatures need to be top of mind.

“If you’re dehydrated, your blood pressure will be low and it’s bad to have a low blood pressure cause it affects everything,” Dr. Kobina Wilmot, a cardiologist with Novant Health, said.

He says dehydration can go from bad to worse fast.

“You can be lightheaded, dizzy, you can pass out,” he said.

To avoid getting to that point, he recommends drinking 64 ounces of water a day.

“If you’re drinking alcohol, you need to drink more water too, to account for the dehydration,” he said.

Splashing into a pool or lake does not put you out of the woods.

“We’re assuming that being around water helps, but you still sweat, you’re still losing electrolytes, you’re still losing water,” he said.

Dr. Wilmot says people of all ages are at risk for heat stroke, particularly those 65 and older.

He recommends those in that age group limit their time outside during the peak hours of heat.

At any age, he says you should look out for symptoms that may mean you need medical attention.

“Feeling like the room is spinning just when you get up from a seated position to a standing position, you feel a little like you’re off kilter, you feel like you might pass out,” he said. “That’s not a good sign.”

If you’re headed somewhere cooler for the weekend, like the mountains, he says you still need to be cautious because humidity can affect you similarly to heat.