Summer is always one of the most loved seasons of the year, but also the hottest. When temperatures rise, seniors may be a risk for a host of heat-related issues such as heat stress and dehydration. But, there are ways to prevent them and keep your elderly loved ones comfortable.
Here are some helpful tips for keeping your favorite senior cool as a cucumber!
Dress for the Occasion!
Seniors can still enjoy the sunshine and soak up some vitamin C if they prefer being outdoors as long as they take the proper precautions. When heading outside during the summer months, elderly folks should always wear sunscreen as well as light-weight and loose clothing. Choose material that is breathable such as cotton. Don’t forget to accessorize with a fabulous sunhat and sunglasses for extra sun protection a la Jackie O. style!
Stay out of Direct Sunlight
Never position someone who is elderly in direct sunlight. If they must be outside, make sure they are relaxed and alleviate the hot temperature by seating them under an umbrella or in a shaded area. Again, as stated above, they should be dressed appropriately for a hot summer day.
If it’s a scorcher outside, it’s best for seniors to stay indoors where ther is air conditioning. Seniors may tend to feel cold in air conditioning because they have decreased circulation. However, for the benefit of their well-being, they should dress in layers so that they can add or remove clothing as needed. If an air conditioner isn’t available, take them to places where they can stay cool such as the library, mall or senior center. For seniors who aren’t mobile and an air conditioner isn’t available, keep shades and curtains closed to minimize heat, and use a fan to circulate the air.
Don’t Forgo the H20!
Older adults are more prone to de-hydration during the hot months. It’s important that they have plenty of water or their favorite beverage to drink. You can also give them hydrating foods to snack on. Fruits and vegetables such as cucumbers and watermelon are naturally hydrating and refreshing.
Don’t Put the Buns in the Oven!
On hot scalding days, keep the oven off. Using an oven will only increase the temperature indoors and could make for an unbearable situation for an elderly person. Avoid heavy and hot meals if possible. Prepare cold salads and sandwiches such as chicken or tuna salad instead. If you must serve cooked food, then use an outdoor grill.
If you are a caregiver for a loved one who is a senior, it’s important for their safety to be kept cool and comfortable during the summer months. It’s also a good idea to check on them often during the summer months to make sure they have everything they need to combat the heat. The Arbors Assisted Living is a community that encourages outdoor summer safety for elders. Contact us today to learn more about The Arbors Assisted Living Communities.