ST. LOUIS — As temperatures soar into the 90s the next few days, the combination of heat and humidity will create a heat index well above 100 degrees for several afternoons in a row. An excessive heat warning has been issued by the National Weather Service for much of the region beginning Wednesday afternoon.

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With the recent tropical rain, humidity levels are expected to be highest on Wednesday and Thursday. Heat indices could reach as high as 106 degrees Wednesday afternoon. By Thursday afternoon into Friday, the afternoon heat index could climb above 110 degrees in the metro St. Louis area.

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Overnight lows will struggle to get much below 80 degrees at night in the city. 

Heat has a cumulative effect on the body and this stretch of hot weather will likely last through the weekend. A cold front is expected to pass through the region later Sunday or Monday bringing more tolerable temperatures to the area.

Heatwaves like this can quickly cause heat stress or heat stroke if precautions are not taken. The very young, the elderly, those without air conditioning and those participating in strenuous outdoor activities will be the most susceptible.

Drinking plenty of water, staying out of the sun and spending time in air conditioning are important during this time. Check on your neighbors and remember your pets need relief from the heat as well.