Now that summer is in full swing it’s important to stay safe in the heat. The following summer safety tips for seniors are important to stay safe and enjoy the season to it’s fullest!
- Stay hydrated – Increase fluid intake during hot weather regardless of activity levels. Avoid drinks with alcohol and caffeine as they dehydrate the body. If your doctor has recommended fluid restriction due to a medical condition be sure to talk to them about how much water you should be drinking when it is hot outside.
- Avoid strenuous activity – Especially during the hottest hours of the day (10 am to 4 pm). Take frequent breaks even from light activity.
- Stay indoors – Draw the blinds to keep the sun out. Air conditioning isn’t always available, however running fans to circulate the air can make a world of difference. Seek out air conditioned places such as a mall or your favourite restaurant to cool off.
- Choose appropriate clothing – Wear light weight breathable clothing
- Cool down – Take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath.
If you have elderly relatives or neighbours check in on them at least twice a day and watch for signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Common Signs of Heat Exhaustion
- Rapid heart rate
- Muscle cramps
- Pale skin
- Profuse sweating
Common Signs of Heat Stroke
- Core body temperature above 105 Fahrenheit
- Throbbing headache
- Dizziness and light-headedness
- Lack of sweating despite the heat
- Red, hot and dry skin
- Muscle weakness or cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid heartbeat which may be either strong or weak
- Behavioural changes such as confusion and disorientation
If you think your friend or loved one is showing signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke get them out of the heat immediately! Have somebody call for medical attention while you attempt to cool them off. If they are conscious and alert offer them some cool water. Remove unnecessary clothing and use cool towels to help bring down body temperature. With these tips and information we can all enjoy a safe summer!