Handling the heat | Greenville, SC | Interim HealthCare

Summertime and the livin’ is easy. If you know how to handle the heat, that is. Seniors are especially at risk as the temperatures begin to climb during the summer months. Here are some do’s and don’ts to be aware of when the weather turns hot:

  • Do drink eight or more 8-ounce glasses of water a day to stay hydrated.
  • Do avoid beverages with caffeine or alcohol, which can dehydrate you.
  • Do wear loose-fitting clothes in a light color that are made of natural fabric to reflect the heat of the sun.
  • Do wear 30 SPF sunscreen outside, as well as a hat and sunglasses to protect your skin.
  • Do try to stay indoors during extreme heat.
  • Don’t let temperatures inside the home go above 85 degrees Fahrenheit for long periods of time.
  • Don’t ignore the signs of heat stroke—a flushed face, high body temperature, headache, nausea, rapid pulse, dizziness or confusion.
Older adult’s bodies contain less water than younger people, and they are less likely to recognize when they are thirsty. According to a study from Ohio State University, seniors (and young children) are therefore more susceptible to heat stroke, a condition in which a person's body isn't able to produce enough sweat to cool them down. Underlying conditions such as congestive heart failure, diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD, can increase a seniors risk.
What are some other tips to help seniors beat the heat this summer? Interim HealthCare recommends checking in on older loved ones more during the hot weather and also helping out more with tasks such as cleaning the house, watering the plants and mowing the lawn. If you need help caring for a loved one, Interim’s senior care providers are here to help. Their assistance with daily tasks can protect loved ones from overdoing it when temperatures are high.