The dog days of summer are upon us. Many people believe that phrase means that the hottest days of the year are occurring.
While it’s true that temperatures soar during the dog days, the phrase actually refers to a star called Sirius, which is the brightest star in the sky at this time of the year. Sirius is nicknamed “the dog star” because it trails behind the constellation Orion like a loyal dog following its master. Although the origins of the phrase may not quite be what you thought it was, you can still expect some pretty hot days to come. Since older adults are at increased risk for developing heat-related illnesses, it’s important to protect them from the hotter temperatures. Below are 4 safety tips to protect seniors from the heat.
#1: Keep an Eye on the Weather
Paying attention to what temperatures are expected to be will help you to be prepared for what your aging relative is likely to need. In describing summer temperatures, weather forecasters often talk about the heat index. Heat index is what the temperature will feel like. It is a combination of both the temperature of the air and the humidity level. When it is more humid outside, it will feel warmer than the actual air temperature.
#2: Take the Senior Where There is Air Conditioning
When the temperature is high, if your aging relative does not have air conditioning, take them to a place that does. Ask a friend or family member if the older adult can spend the day with them if you are unable to take them to your home. On days when the heat is considered a danger, most communities have cooling stations where people can go to cool off. Find out where these places are where the senior lives.
#3: Offer More Cold Liquids
Don’t wait for the older adult to say they are thirsty before offering them a cool drink. Chances are, they are already dehydrated when they notice they need a drink. Instead, encourage them to sip from a bottle of water all day long.
#4: Stay Indoors on the Hottest Days
When it is very hot outside, it may be best for your older family member to stay inside where there is air conditioning instead of going outside. If they have to go somewhere, consider starting the car and letting the air conditioner cool it off a bit before the older adult gets in. Avoid outdoor exercise, like going for a walk or gardening, when it is too hot.
Another way you can ensure your aging relative stays safe on hot days is by using home care. On hot days, home care can check in on the older adult to make sure they are comfortable, and the house is not too hot. If the senior needs to go to a cooling station or someone else’s home where there is air conditioning, a home care provider can drive them there. Home care providers can also encourage the senior to drink cold water throughout the day and keep a bottle or glass filled and near them.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Health Care in Alpharetta, GA, please call the caring staff at Always Care Nursing Service today.Call for Assistance: (404) 266-8773 or (800) 989-7828