Summer is close at hand, and with it comes the insatiable desire to spend copious amounts of time outdoors engaging in fun physical activities. While this is normal for the season, it can sometimes lead to unexpectedly dangerous health-related situations, especially for senior citizens and their caregivers. Seniors in particular require special attention in hot and humid weather conditions, so it’s especially important to adhere to summer safety tips to help keep them out of harm’s way.
Summer Safety Tips for Seniors
Older people tend to be more vulnerable when it comes to heavy heat waves, smog, and strong humidity. Thankfully there are a few effective elderly-care tips for summer that caregivers, family members, and friends can put into practice to help keep their older loved ones safe and happy this summer. Of course, it’s also up to the elderly person to actively take care of themselves.
Adequate hydration is one of the cornerstones of maintaining exceptional health and enjoying a long and happy life. Dehydration is challenging for a lot of elderly people because their ability to detect thirst and process water deteriorates as they age, making them much more susceptible to heat stroke. Over time, the body’s ability to cool down by producing sweat through the pores is also hindered, and this can cause hyperthermia. A good tip is to refrain from drinking diuretic beverages, which cause you to urinate more frequently—such as coffee or tea—and stick to water or sweat-replenishing drinks.
Regulate Your Body Temperature
As people age, it becomes increasingly difficult for their bodies to regulate and maintain a comfortable temperature. You can facilitate this by wearing hats with large brims to keep you cool, carrying around ice packs to bring down your temperature if you get overheated, and wearing light, breathable clothing.
Wear Layered Clothing
During the transition period between spring and summer, the weather fluctuates at an unbelievable rate and these unpredictable weather patterns can cause a lot of people to catch colds. Wearing light and layered clothing can help seniors avoid falling victim to different weather extremes during this time of year. You can wear a light, cotton t-shirt with a thin cardigan on top, allowing you to adjust your clothes as needed throughout the day.
Avoid Excessive Sun Exposure
Sometimes, it’s not enough to wear a lot of sunscreen for protection from UV rays (although that’s a great place to start) because prolonged exposure to strong sun rays can lead to mild or severe sun burns, dehydration, and heat stroke. On days when the sun is particularly cumbersome, it’s best to stay indoors in dark, air-conditioned places. You should try to do outdoor activities and exercises in the early morning or evening when the temperature is a bit cooler and the sun isn’t at its peak.
The professional caregivers at Home Care Assistance – Kitchener, Waterloo, and Guelph are all well-prepared and trained to take care of seniors who want to stay active in the summertime by spending time outdoors. Our staff is very knowledgeable when it comes to recognizing, preventing, and reacting to potentially dangerous situations for seniors, and we’ll always do everything in our power to safeguard your elderly loved ones and treat them with the utmost respect and dignity. To learn more about our part-time and full-time caregiving services, please call us today at (519) 954-2111.