With the 4th of July now behind us, we’re well into the summer months that are sure to be sweltering. Now that the heat is on, we need to pay close attention to the senior community as they are very susceptible to the effects of heat. If you have a loved one in their senior years, here are four tips you can follow to keep them safe in the summer.
As we age, our sense of thirst is often diminished. This means seniors can easily forget to drink enough water, and by the time they remember to drink some water they can already be dangerously dehydrated. This goes double for seniors with dementia. To ensure proper hydration, make sure caregivers are regularly providing water and monitoring hydration levels.
If your loved one lives alone, without visits from caregivers, it’s best to give them a call at least once a day. See how they’re doing and ask how much water they’ve had to drink. You can rest assured they’ll appreciate the daily communication and it’s a great way for you to check up on them to see if they need anything.
The summer heat can take a toll on seniors, but keeping them cooped up in their homes all day can also have serious negative health effects. It’s important for seniors to maintain an active social life during the summer, but proper planning is needed. Avoid running outdoor errands during the hottest parts of the day and schedule trips to air conditioned locations throughout the day.
If all else fails, you need to be aware of the signs of heat stroke. Not sweating in hot settings, confusion, nausea, headaches, fatigue, fever, and rapid pulse are all signs your loved one might be experiencing a heat stroke. If this happens, seek immediate medical attention.