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6 Ways Older Adults Can Safely Enjoy the Summer

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There’s no reason older adults cannot enjoy summer along with other family members. However, seniors are often more susceptible to injuries and other issues that do not afflict younger people. By taking the appropriate precautions, seniors have a better chance of staying safe in the summertime. 

1. Replace Fluids 

During the heat of summer, seniors are more likely to experience the effects of fluid loss compared to people in other age groups. Many older adults take medications known as diuretics to eliminate excess fluid, which compounds the danger. Seniors may not feel thirsty and thus might not give hydrating a second thought. Other symptoms of dehydration include confusion, headaches, and nausea. They might also feel more fatigued than usual. Seniors should routinely drink non-caffeinated fluids while exposed to indoor or outdoor heat. If engaged in physical activity, they should replace fluids with a half sports drink and half water combination. 

Dehydration can lead to a number of health issues. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional home care. Sonoma County, CA, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

2. Stay Cool 

Older adults are more susceptible to higher temperatures, which is exacerbated when combined with cardiovascular conditions, diabetes, or other serious conditions. During the heat of the day, seniors should consider staying indoors, using an air conditioner or fan, drinking cool fluids, using cool compresses, or taking a cool bath to keep internal temperatures from rising to dangerous levels. Going to public places with central air conditioning is another option. 

3. Choose Summer Wardrobe 

To stay cool, older adults should wear lightweight clothing made from natural fibers such as cotton. Light-colored clothing also reflects the sun’s rays when outdoors. 

4. Protect the Skin from the Sun 

Senior skin is thin and thus more likely to endure a greater degree of damage when sunburned. Seniors need to apply sunscreen with a high SPF rating before venturing outdoors between 10am and 4pm. Reapply the cream or lotion every two hours, and if your loved one is swimming, sunscreen needs reapplying every 30 minutes. Long-sleeved blouses or shirts, slacks, or trousers made from light-colored, lightweight material also prevent sunburn. Protect your loved one’s scalp and face with a wide-brimmed hat. 

For some families, caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times. Luckily, they can rely on professional respite care. Sonoma County, CA, Home Care Assistance is a trusted name in respite and hourly care. Our caregivers are available around the clock to assist seniors with bathing, transportation, medication reminders, exercise, and much more, allowing families the time they need to focus on other important responsibilities or just take a break.

5. Protect the Eyes 

It is not unusual for older adults to live with various vision disorders. Subjecting the eyes to direct sunlight causes further irritation and damage. While outdoors, your loved one should wear sunglasses that specifically prevent the absorption of harmful ultraviolet rays. 

6. Use Insect Repellent 

Adults over the age of 50 are more likely to experience severe effects from Eastern equine encephalitis, West Nile virus, or Zika virus when bitten by infected mosquitoes. As mosquitos are more prevalent after watering the lawn, after a rainstorm, or near standing water, seniors need to take extra precautions when venturing outdoors. Apply a commercial product containing DEET, a natural pyrethrin, or a solution that combines lemon and eucalyptus to your loved one’s skin. Use citronella candles around the home and encourage your loved one to wear protective clothing.

A professional in-home caregiver can help your loved one stay safe during the summer. When searching for reliable Sonoma County home care agencies, families want to know their senior loved one will be well taken care of. At Home Care Assistance, our expertly trained caregivers are available around the clock to assist with tasks around the house, provide transportation to medical appointments and social events, and much more. Call us at (707) 843.4368 to talk to one of our Care Managers to schedule a free in-home consultation.