Weather can play an important role in the health and well-being of the seniors in your life. Regardless of if you're dealing with winter temperatures or the heat of summer, there are steps that need to be taken to keep your aging relatives protected.
When dealing with parents who are aging in place will need to take some time to make sure that mom and dad's home is summer-ready. Here are some summer safety tips for seniors that can take to assure your aging loved ones will be healthy all summer long:
Take steps to make sure the house is cool. You don't need to have air conditioners installed (they do certainly help, though) to keep the house cool. You can close the blinds in the hottest part of the day, use fans to circulate the air, open windows to let in a cross breeze.
Wear loose fitting clothing. Wearing tight clothing and long sleeves can lead to overheating.
Stay indoors during the heat of the day. Don't undertake outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day. If your parents are active, urge them to do their outdoor tasks, whether it's gardening, mowing or simply taking a walk, in the early morning or the early dusk hours. Urge them not to walk in the dark, though.
Eat and drink wisely. Staying hydrated and drinking water is critical to staying healthy in the heat of the summer. Drink beverages without caffeine. When it comes to meals, try to stay away from using the oven. Cook lighter meals such as salads or sandwiches or meals that require little prep time or won't require you to stand over a hot stove for lengthy periods.
Understand the signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion. If you're feeling lightheaded, weak, or are vomiting, these could be signs of heat stroke. Urge your parents to keep track of their health when you're not in attendance and if they feel any of these symptoms, they should get to a cool location, drink fluids and use a cool compress on their head and neck. A way to offer peace of mind to all family members, especially as the summer heats up, is to provide them with a home medical monitoring device and personal medical bracelets or necklaces. If they feel ill or suffer a fall, they can summon medical assistance at the push of a button.
You may want to make sure you spend some time "summer proofing" the house to make sure it is as safe and cool as it can be.