Now that we have celebrated the fourth of July, the true dog days of summer are officially here. As the mercury continues to rise and the sun is out longer and stronger, it’s important to keep yourself safe. Here are some tips for seniors to stay safe during the height of the summer:
- Drink more water than usual and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
- If your doctor limits the amount of fluids you drink or has you on water pills, ask them how much you should drink during hot weather.
- Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible.
- If you live in a home without air conditioning, use fans and try to keep your space as cool as possible by limiting the use of the oven; keep shades, blinds, or curtains closed during the hottest part of the day.
- If your living space is hot, try to spend time during midday in a place that has air conditioning. For example, go to the shopping mall, movies, library, senior center, or a friend’s home.
- If you need help getting to a cooler place, ask a friend or relative. Some religious groups, senior centers, and Area Agencies on Aging provide this service. Search the Eldercare Locator to find services in your area.
- Dress for the weather. Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. Natural fabrics such as cotton may feel cooler than synthetic fibers.
- Avoid physical activity when it is very hot.
- If you will be outside, make sure to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen, SPF 30 or higher, and reapply it throughout the day and wear a hat and sunglasses.
- Ask your doctor if any of your medications make you more likely to become overheated or sunburned.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
- Take cool showers or baths to cool down.
Community Based Care cares about your safety, so please stay cool and hydrated this summer.
*Sources; CDC and NHI