3 Ways To Keep Your Senior Safe In The Summer Heat

Posted on: 25 May 2018

Whether you're an elder care professional or have a senior loved one in your life who you provide caretaking service for, you're probably aware of some of the hazards that senior citizens encounter during the winter months. Icy steps, slippery sidewalks, and decreased visibility due to weather conditions such as fog, rain, and snow can create a dangerous environment. However, many people fail to recognize that summer comes with its own set of potential perils for seniors. Following are three ways that you can help your senior stay as happy and healthy as possible while seasonal temperatures soar. 

1. Have the AC System Inspected

Every summer, news outlets all across the country publish heartbreaking accounts of seniors losing their lives or becoming seriously ill during heat waves as a result of not having adequate air conditioning. Making sure your senior's AC system is good to go for the summer helps circumvent this type of situation. Summer's first heat wave causes AC units to work harder than they have in months, and this can result in malfunctions if the unit isn't properly prepared. Because so many systems break down during the first serious heat wave of the year, it's not always possible to get an appointment for a quick repair. 

2. Make Sure Your Senior Stays Hydrated

Because the body's ability to conserve water decreases with age, seniors are more vulnerable to becoming dehydrated than their younger counterparts. Making sure your senior stays properly hydrated is important, especially since they may be less aware of feelings of thirst than when they were younger. Be sure to keep a pitcher of chilled water in the refrigerator and offer it to your senior several times per day. The addition of a few fruit slices can make plain water more appealing and well as provide some vitamin C. Foods that contain high amounts of water such as berries, melons, and oranges also help guard against dehydration. 

3. Be Aware of the Signs of Hyperthermia


Hyperthermia is a condition that happens when the body temperature rises to 104 degrees or higher. Otherwise known as heat stroke, hyperthermia can be life-threatening, which is why it's essential for caregivers and loved ones of seniors to understand and recognize the symptoms. Symptoms include confusion, unexplained agitation, rapid pulse, failure to produce sweat, feeling light-headed or faint, and heavy breathing. 

Contact a company like Polish Helping Hands for more information on helping your senior have a happy and safe summer season.