Lingering smoke from Panhandle fires may pose health risk - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lingering smoke from Panhandle fires may pose health risk

As smoke continues to linger here in Lubbock and across the South Plains, so does the chance for adverse health effects for those breathing it in. 

So what should you do to keep you and your family safe?

Experts those who suffer from asthma, COPD and emphysema should be particularly careful.

However, Dr. Stan Garrett, Medical Director of Covenant Medical Group, says the concern also extends to people who may not have these conditions.

He says the smoke can create problems, from stuffy noses, to sinus issues. But, he says the worst case scenario is when the smoke travels into a person's lungs and creates an infection.

Dr. Garrett says your best option is to spend as little time outside as possible, but if you have to venture outdoors, he says there are steps you can take to minimize your risk.

"If you're gonna be out there, wearing masks to help protect the air ways, and the nose and the mouth can be beneficial. Wearing eye protection, even for people who don't wear contact lenses...protect those vital parts of the body," Garrett says.

Dr. Garrett says the treatment for these problems can often be as simple as a hot shower, or in medicine found over the counter, a question that can easily be directed to your local pharmacist. 

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