Summer Safety Tips for Seniors
When the weather starts to heat up, it brings with it additional dangers. Excessive heat is already dangerous for people of any age, but for seniors, it can pose a dire threat.
In order to keep seniors safe throughout the summer, we’ve compiled a few friendly reminders. That way, you can both stay comfortable.
1) Stay Hydrated
Keeping seniors hydrated takes proactivity. The goal is approximately 6-8 glasses of water a day. If an older adult is sweating excessively, they may require even more.
Dehydration, if left unchecked, can lead to headaches, nausea, dizziness, and fatigue. Eventually, it can be life-threatening. Water also helps the cells in your body function more effectively.
While keeping your patient hydrated, you should be sure that they’re drinking water, sports drinks, or Pedialyte. Beverages with alcohol or caffeine in them can actually dehydrate seniors. Fruit juice, while not the best, is still more hydrating than soda or coffee, but you’ll want to be aware of any diabetic restrictions.
2) Keep Cool
Ideally, seniors should stay in air-conditioning as much as possible. If the person you’re taking care of doesn’t have air conditioning, arrange trips to malls, stores, movie theaters, or dining places whenever the temperature soars (around midday).
You can also talk to the county or state about providing additional help to seniors who need air conditioning, as there are sometimes initiatives to help them pay the associated costs.
3) Dress them Appropriately
Time to cast off those dark, wintry clothes and dress for summer! Helping seniors dress in loose, light-colored linen can help improve their chances of beating the heat. Aim for comfortable, loose clothing, and don’t be afraid to help them choose a hat to shade their face.
4) Check on Medication
A lack of air conditioning can cause a ton of problems. Some medications shouldn’t be stored above temperatures of 78 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result, they can lose effectiveness.
Summertime is a good time to audit all of the medications that seniors are taking, discover which ones interact at which temperature, and re-evaluate if they need the medication or not.
5) Wear Sunscreen
If you want to venture to the park for some fresh air, make sure that you’re both wearing sunscreen! Sunburn can be devastatingly painful for everyone, and in order to avoid it, you’ll want to apply anything above an SPF 15 to affected areas. Seek shade and use hats as well.