We might all complain about our lack of sunshine as the summer gets underway but as soon as the sun does begin to shine, it can get very hot, very quickly. Keeping elderly family members and friends cool in the summer is important as excessive heat can soon make a person very ill.
Heat exhaustion is a serious thing and can include dizziness, headaches, nausea and vomiting. If a person becomes too hot the excessive sweating occurs and extra strain is also placed on the heart. Heat stroke can develop if there is no respite from the heat and this can lead to intense thirst, high temperature and confusion. It can even lead to loss of consciousness and become a life threatening condition.
This is why keeping cool in hot temperatures is so important and more so for the elderly. Here are a few tips which can protect your elderly relatives when the temperatures rise.
Advise the person to stay out of the heat, especially between the most dangerous times of 12 noon and 3pm. It is not a good idea to sit out in the direct sun between these hours as the sun will be at its strongest and sunburn can easily occur.
Wear a Hat.
If they do wish to go out in the sun, then a wide brimmed hat is always a good idea to protect their head from the rays and heat of the sun.
Whether walking, taking public transport or even in the car, it is a really good idea to always have a bottle of water with you. Staying hydrated helps to keep you comfortable and helps the body to deal better with the heat.
Your elderly relative should avoid any strenuous activity and limited housework to a minimum during a hot spell. If they must garden or clean, then it is best to get it done in the early morning or the cool of the evening when the sun has lost its strength.
Encourage your relative to wear loose fitting clothing which is both light and breathable such as linen or cotton.
Take a cool shower or splash their face with cold water every now and again for a refreshing boost.
Protect the Skin.
It is important that a high factor sun cream or block is used if your elderly relative is going to be exposed to the sun. There are many brands available and the higher the Factor, the more protection the cream will provide. Sun creams are also available in a light spray form which is quick and easy to apply as needed.
Consider Air Conditioning.
Air conditioning for the home is a great choice to keep the temperatures down. Available to hire, portable air conditioning units can be placed just where you need them and moved from room to room as needed.
They keep the air at the desired temperature, keeping you cool and comfortable. They also filter the air and remove pollens, toxins and pollution which is great for anyone who suffers from an allergy.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Guest post written by Bethany Dyer, looking at air con hire for her care home.