An internet image of Saharan dust moving across the Atlantic Ocean.

The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Meteorological Service has issued a 72-hour weather outlook indicating that haze intrusion is forecast to thicken across the country from today (Wednesday) with improvement likely around Friday.

This haze intrusion is due to the progression of a thick concentration of Saharan dust haze located in the central Atlantic.

The Ministry of Health has, therefore, advised that particles contained within the Saharan dust haze could cause dry cough, sore throat, itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, and runny nose

The ministry further advised that the health impact of the Saharan dust haze will differ due to the sensitivity of individuals and the extent of the exposure.

High concentrations of the Saharan dust may worsen illness in persons with respiratory diseases such as asthma and persons with pre-existing heart disease. The elderly and children are also vulnerable at this time.

Persons in these vulnerable groups could limit their exposure to the Saharan dust by staying indoors when possible.

Vulnerable groups should also have the necessary medication, including asthma inhalers with them at all times.

Symptoms should disappear as the Saharan dust levels subside, the ministry said.  

Affected persons should seek medical attention at their nearest health care centre if they experience severe symptoms as a result of increasing levels of Saharan dust.

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