Summertime Safety for Seniors - Beat the Heat
||Summertime is here, bringing picnics, fireworks and excessive heat. When the temperature is high, older adults are especially prone to heat illnesses. Your body normally cools itself by sweating, but sweating isn't enough in excessive heat. Your body temperature can rise to dangerous levels resulting in a heat illness. Most heat illnesses occur from staying outside in the hot, humid weather too long. Older adults, young children and those who are sick or overweight are most at risk.
Heat-related illnesses (from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
a life-threatening illness in which body temperature may rise above 106° F in minutes; symptoms include dry skin, rapid, strong pulse and dizziness
- Heat exhaustion
an illness that can precede heatstroke; symptoms include heavy sweating, rapid breathing and a fast, weak pulse
- Heat cramps
muscle pains or spasms that happen during heavy exercise
- Heat rash
skin irritation from excessive sweating
Beat the Heat
- Air-conditioning is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death. During conditions of extreme heat, spend time in locations with air-conditioning such as shopping malls, public libraries, or public health sponsored heat-relief shelters in your area.
- Get informed. Listen to local news and weather channels or contact your local public health department during extreme heat conditions for health and safety updates
- Drink cool, nonalcoholic beverages and increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level.
- Limit exercise and physical activity