The warm and sunny summertime is a time of year that most of us look forward to. With the temperatures high and the sun in the sky, we tend to want to be out and about more often. However, for our elderly population, it’s particularly important to avoid overheating. Many people over the age of 65 are at risk of heat-related illnesses. It’s wise, of course, for seniors to be mindful of ways to keep cool during the summertime.
What can you do to help? Let’s take a look a few smart steps you can take.
Crack open the windows of your home.
Using an air conditioner during the summertime is always a popular choice. However, in many cases, they tend to make people cold. Elderly individuals are particularly sensitive to extreme temperatures. In lieu of running the A/C, why not keep the windows open? This will not only promote better air flow throughout the home, but it will help to keep your household’s members cool.
“As people age, their brain sometimes can’t recognize that the body is overheating,” alerts VisitingAngels.com, “As a result, some seniors keep windows closed or may wear sweaters on sweltering days because they feel cold. Be sure to open some windows throughout the house to circulate fresh air and maintain a safe temperature.”
Crack open the windows of your car.
No one has to remind you of just how hot a vehicle can get when it is parked in the summer heat. With the windows closed, the inside of your car can reach baking oven levels. When returning to your car from an excursion, be sure to air it out adequately before having your elderly loved one step inside. Furthermore, be sure to keep the windows open during your drive. The breeze can work wonders!
“When traveling in a car with seniors, always maintain a suitable temperature during the trip,” encourages VisitingAngels.com, “Leave windows open if they stay in the vehicle while you run into a store. Like very young members of the family, seniors need fresh air, as they run a greater risk of overheating in a hot, closed automobile. And of course for safety, make sure all passengers use their seat belts.”
Keep your elderly loved ones well hydrated.
We know that encouraging your elderly loved one to drink water all day may be met with some opposition. After all, frequent trips to the bathroom is often high on the list of nuisances many seniors have. However, by replenishing their fluids, older adults will be able to avoid dehydration. Naturally, this is an important step in not just beating the heat, but maintaining optimum overall health.
“Alcoholic beverages and caffeine should be avoided since they can cause dehydration,” notes Allen Riggs on Caregiver.com, “Water is a great option, but does not effectively replace the potassium and sodium (electrolytes) that we lose when perspiring. Popular ‘sports drinks’ such as Gatorade, Powerade and/or inexpensive homemade substitutes…are great choices for rehydrating the body.”
At Advantage Home Health Solutions, we’d love to assist your elderly loved to stay cool and comfortable all summer long. If you have any questions about how our accessibility and mobility solutions can help, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 403-460-5438. You may also email us by filling out the form on our Contact page!