It can be really difficult to help your elderly family member to stay comfortable when the temperatures outside keep climbing. Add in humidity, too, and your senior could be susceptible to a variety of heat-related illnesses. Try some of these ideas in order to help your elderly family member to stay as cool as she can when the weather outside is overwhelmingly hot.
Drink Plenty of Hydrating Fluids
Avoiding drinks that are full of caffeine, sugar, and alcohol is important when the weather is hot outside. Hydrating beverages, preferably water, are much better for your senior because they ensure that she’s not losing too much fluid. If she’s not a fan of water, consider unsweetened herbal teas as a substitute. An elder care provider can ensure that your senior drinks plenty of water throughout the day, as well as consuming nutritious foods that also provide hydration.
Shower and Bathe with Cool Water
Warm or hot showers and baths might feel good to aching joints, but during summer they’re not a great idea. It’s much better for your senior to bathe and shower with lukewarm or cooler water to help her to keep her core temperature down. In fact, a cool soak or shower later in the afternoon can be especially good if she’s overheated in the afternoon.
Stay out of Direct Sun and Turn on the Air Conditioner, if Possible
To avoid overheating, it’s important for your senior to stay out of direct sunlight as much as possible. If your senior has air conditioning, that’s the best option for helping her to stay as cool as she can. In fact, Air Conditioning Appreciation Days run from July 3 through August 15, which can be some of the hottest parts of the summer.
Rest During the Hottest Parts of the Day
If your senior doesn’t already limit her activity levels when it’s hot outside, convince her to rest during the hottest parts of the day. This can be crucial if she has health issues that contribute to overheating more easily. Bringing in elder care providers can ensure that your senior has her needs met but that she’s also able to rest as much as possible.
Hot weather is nothing to play around with for aging adults. Your senior’s body doesn’t respond to temperature variations, especially hotter weather, in the same ways that it did when she was younger. If she’s taking medications, it’s also a good idea to talk to her doctor about how hot weather can affect side effects from those medications and her health issues as well.