Did you know that older adults are more prone to heat stress? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are several reasons for this. Older adults do not adjust as well as young people to sudden changes in temperature, they are more likely to have a chronic medical condition that changes normal body response to heat, and they are more likely to take prescription medicines that affect the body’s ability to control its temperature or sweat.  While there are dangers that come with hot temperatures, there are also plenty of safety precautions seniors can take so that they are able to enjoy the summer. Check out our hot weather tips for seniors:
Hydration Is Essential
One of the most important things we can all do is stay hydrated. While this is a tip to keep in mind year-round, it’s especially crucial in the summer. Increased temperatures lead to water loss through sweating and evaporation as our bodies work hard to keep us cool.  This increase in water loss makes dehydration a huge risk. For seniors, some of the signs of dehydration include confusion, difficulty walking, and sunken eyes.  To make sure you are staying hydrated, try to drink even if you do not feel thirsty, set a goal for how many ounces to drink every hour, and keep a reusable water bottle with you at all times.
Don’t Forget Your Sunscreen
Of course, everyone wants to get outside once summer arrives. With the perfect weather for golfing, swimming, and hiking, many seniors look to get out of the house to enjoy the fresh air. To make sure you get the most out of the activities you enjoy, you should always use sunscreen to avoid painful and uncomfortable burns. It is recommended that you apply sunscreen 15 minutes before being outside to give your skin time to absorb it and reapply every few hours throughout the day. Remember that even on overcast days, you should still use precaution to protect your skin from harmful rays.
Make Time for Rest and Recovery
As much as we all love being active outdoors, we should also look for ways to cut back and let our bodies recover. When indoors, try to stay in air-conditioned areas and continue drinking ample amounts of water to refuel your body. Look into joining a fitness center rather than exercise outdoors, where you can not only enjoy your workout in the air-conditioning but also under the supervision of trained staff. Seniors should also look for ways to avoid strenuous work in the heat, like mowing the lawn or gardening. Wait until cooler evening hours or, if possible, get outside help from a landscaping company.
Check the Weather Forecast
The last of our hot weather tips for seniors helps ensure a safe and fun summer. Make sure you check the forecast to know what the UV index is and if there are any heat wave warnings, so you can take the proper precautions. Wear light clothing, hats, and sunglasses to help protect yourself. Take breaks and pay close attention to staying hydrated. You should also speak with your doctor or pharmacist to see if any of your medications alter your body’s temperature. By being prepared and informed, you can avoid heat stress and enjoy the season!
Talk to Us About Our Independent Retirement Lifestyle
Riddle Village Retirement Community offers many activities and amenities that can be enjoyed no matter the temperature outside! Contact our team or give us a call at 610-891-3700 to learn more about our independent retirement lifestyle or any questions you may have about our hot weather tips for seniors.