With summer in full swing and temperatures in the high 80’s nearly daily, it is important that everyone takes proper precautions to stay safe during such hot weather. We have compiled a list of hot weather safety tips especially useful for older adults. Stay safe this summer!
- Hydrate. Drinking plenty of water is important as our bodies can’t function properly when dehydrated. Stay hydrated to avoid getting headaches or feeling faint or sleepy, and avoid dehydrating liquids such as coffee, alcohol, or caffeinated soft drinks. Be proactive with hydrating, don’t wait until you feel thirsty to grab a glass of water!
- Stay in cool or air-conditioned buildings. To avoid heat-related illnesses, make sure to keep your home at a cool temperature. Use fans if you don’t have an air-conditioned home, but be aware that fans alone may not be enough to keep you cool. Consider taking a cool shower to cool off if needed. To help keep the room temperature low in your home, use thick blinds and curtains to block out direct sunlight during the day.
- Pace yourself when outdoors. It is best to avoid being outdoors in times of high humidity and peak sun. But if you are going to be outside on a walk or doing work in the yard, be sure to slow down, take time to rest if you are doing strenuous activities. Stay in a shaded area if possible, wear lightweight clothing, and use a damp cloth to stay cool.
- Use sunscreen to avoid sunburn. Getting burnt by the sun can have short-term consequences including burning and blistery skin, or long-term consequences including skin cancer. Sunburn can occur in as little as 15 minutes, so always go outside prepared to protect your skin.
- Be aware of dangers to your pets. Your dogs or cats can also be at higher risk during hot weather, including burning their paws on the hot pavement or suffering from heat exhaustion if not indoors. To avoid a trip to the vet, make sure to take extra precautions when it comes to keeping your pet cool and comfortable.
- Stay in touch with your neighbors and loved ones. It is always a good idea to check in with your neighbors and family through a phone call to let them know you are doing okay, and make sure they are bracing the heat as well!