10 Tips to Keep Seniors Cool in a Hot Weather Climate

Beat the heat with these great tips to keep seniors cool all summer long.

Summers in Florida are notoriously hot and humid – sometimes unbearably so. For older adults, the excessive heat and humidity can be dangerous. It’s important to know the signs of heat-related illnesses and how to prevent them in order to keep older loved ones safe. American, Advocate and Whitsyms In-Home Care offer the following information on signs to watch for and tips to keep seniors cool.

What Are the Warning Signs of Heat-Related Illnesses?

There are several heat-related conditions to be aware of and to prevent, each with their own distinct symptoms:

  • Heat Rash: Heat rash produces pimple-like blisters in clusters, typically on the chest, neck, groin, or in the bend of the elbow.
  • Sunburn: Most of us are familiar with the redness, warmth, and pain associated with sunburn, but it can also produce blisters.
  • Heat cramps: Heat cramps occur during intense exercise that produces heavy sweating and muscle spasms or pain.
  • Heat exhaustion: Like heat cramps, heat exhaustion also produces heavy sweating and muscle cramps, but can also include cold, clammy skin, weakness or dizziness, headache, nausea, or vomiting.
  • Heat stroke: Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related condition. Skin will be red and hot, and may be either dry or damp. Body temperature is elevated to 103 degrees or more. The person may also experience a strong, fast pulse, dizziness, confusion, headache, nausea, and may lose consciousness as well.

How Can You Prevent Heat-Related Health Problems?

Have a plan in place to avoid heat-related health problems. Keep these ten tips in mind to keep seniors cool and safe.

  1. Dress in breathable, lightweight materials, such as cotton.
  2. Stay hydrated throughout the day, regardless of whether the person feels thirsty or not. Plain, cool water is best. Avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol.
  3. Keep the home air conditioned, and stay indoors during the hottest time of day.
  4. If the home does not have air conditioning, visit cool facilities such as the library, mall, or senior center.
  5. Rest the feet in a pan of cool water.
  6. Take a cool shower or bath, or use cool, damp washcloths to wipe down the skin.
  7. Place a cool, damp washcloth on the back of the neck, regularly dipping into fresh water when it becomes warm.
  8. Eat lighter, chilled meals such as chicken, tuna, or pasta salad.
  9. Enjoy cool treats like popsicles or chilled fruit.
  10. Limit outdoor time to early morning and evening when the heat is less overbearing.

Home Care Services Can Help!

A referred care provider from American, Advocate or Whitsyms In-Home Care can help protect older adults from heat-related conditions, while providing safe, engaging activities to make each day the best it can be. Some of the many ways a referred caregiver can help include:

  • Preparing healthy meals that are light, nutritious, and delicious
  • Running errands like grocery shopping, so the older adult can stay safe in the cool comfort of home
  • Taking care of laundry and light housekeeping chores
  • Offering friendly companionship for engaging conversations, games, cards, arts and crafts, hobbies and interests, puzzles, etc.
  • And much more

To learn more about all the ways in-home care services can help the older adults you love enjoy a safe, comfortable summer, contact us today at the location nearest you.

State of Florida License and Registration Numbers: 30211518, 30211651, 30211295, 30211390, 30210978, 30211293, 30211382, 30211504, 30211733, 30211535, 30211531, 30211710, 30211709, 30211045, 5661