5 Ways to Keep Seniors Cool in Summer
For several reasons, seniors are more susceptible to over-heating than other members of the population.
First, their medications can interfere with their body’s ability to regulate temperature and even inhibit perspiration. Chronic medical conditions themselves interfere with perspiration and temperature regulation. “Heat stroke” occurs when the body loses its’ability to cool down and reaches temperatures of 103° or higher. With these unique challenges, seniors are far more vulnerable to high temperatures than most.
Use these strategies to keep seniors cool in summer in San Diego.
- Keep Seniors Cool: Because San Diego heat oppresses us the most in August, September and October, many San Diego homes don’t even have air conditioning. While those 60 and younger make fans work during these months, older San Diegans may neglect to use fans or stay in closed up homes all day. The walls of homes absorb heat during the day and express it during the cooler night. Much of this stored heat goes INTO the home rather than outside. This atmospheric phenomenon keeps homes baking.
If you or your loved ones don’t have air conditioning, get out to remain cool, returning at night. Take a trip to the mall, museums and other air conditioned areas to keep body temperatures under control. If going to these venues aren’t practical, rest assured that there are over 100 Cool Zones in San Diego County, most of which are county libraries. Open from June 15 to October 31 2015, these spots are open to the public during the day only. There’s a lot to do in a library and staying there throughout the noon hours keeps seniors from running air conditioning at home.
- Exercise and Work Indoors or during Early Morning or Late Evening: Community centers and local gyms have exercise classes for seniors that are air-conditioned. Exercise and work-intent seniors must either perform activity during the coolest hours or in air-conditioned facilities.
- Stay Hydrated: Seniors can neglect their own thirst during the summer months. Read our recent post: “Summer Hydration Tips Your Senior In Home Care Provider Needs” to refresh your memory on how to make sure you or a loved one receives adequate hydration. Drinking more fluids than usual during the summer months is critical, as is avoiding dehydrating fluids like alcohol and caffeine. These increase heat’s deleterious effects on your body.
- Eat Small Meals More Often: Feel like eating less in the summer? It’s no wonder. Large meals, particularly those high in protein, increase metabolic heat. Eating small meals more often keep body temperature regulated and feeling better.
- Recognize Signs of Heat Stroke or Heat Exhaustion Quickly: On hot days, pay particular attention to your own or a loved one’s appearance, feelings and demeanor. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include: cool, pale or flushed skin, heavy sweating, dizziness and exhaustion, nausea, vomiting and headaches. Symptoms of heat stroke include hot, red skin without sweat, as well as confusion, rapid or weak pulse, shallow breathing and high temperature.
Love 2 Live Senior Home Care Providers Understand the Threat Hot Days Can Bring
When we come to talk to you about your needs during your free, no-obligation in-home assessment, you can explain whether you or a loved one takes pains to stay cool during San Diego’s hottest days. We’ll also discuss some strategies to stay cool. Questions? Don’t hesitate to call us at 619-291-4663 today!