Growing up when we did, it was always important to be “cool.” We had the right clothes, the right attitude, the right friends and we were “just cool.” As we age, being cool takes on new meaning. While we can still be stylish, it is important for seniors to monitor body temperature and stay cool. As we age, we don’t have the same ability to sweat as we did earlier in our life … and disgusting as it is, sweat keeps us cool. So in order to avoid serious health concerns like dehydration or stroke or other heat related illness, we need to stay temperature cool.
Many of us have little clue how quickly we dehydrate. In hot humid climates, we experience the sweat that confirms we are dripping liquid. However, in hot arid climates, we seldom sweat and have no idea our body is losing fluid. Our bodies need a delicate balance between too much water and not enough to stay healthy. But most of us dehydrate before we even know it. And reduce caffeine in the summer. It just dehydrates.
Staying cool is best done inside! Sometimes we think the pool is a good solution but avoiding sun exposure is a really good thing. Hit the movie theater with your senior discount and enjoy their air conditioning (and overpriced popcorn.)
Keep your kitchen cool! It is so great to stoke up the oven and roast that Thanksgiving turkey but July 4 is not the best time to turn the oven to 400 degrees for 4 hours. Eat cold! Cold veggies, cold salads, cold meats, deviled eggs, watermelon. Icy smoothies.
Sleep is one of our most important parts of life that many of us struggle with. When it is hot and we are trying to save money, we often turn our air conditioning up. But to be healthy and well, turn your air conditioning down at night. It is cheaper to run when the sun is gone and our bodies need to cool for adequate sleep. Our body temperate normally cools at night naturally to promote sleep … but give it some encouragement. Be warm during the day if you can’t afford the electric bill but cool your home in the dark at night. It will make a huge difference.
Your freezer is your friend! Remember those ice packs you bought for your ice chest or your neck? Take them to bed with you. You can lower body temperature significantly using those “free” items. And if you take a cold shower before bed you will lower body temperature as well. And cold showers don’t require hot water bills.
One of the sneakiest things to cool your home is to take a sheet … soak it in ice water and then hang it from a window. The breeze will reduce room temperatures significantly and keep you more comfortable.
Yup, there are plenty of options to be cool, even at our age!