As the temperature heats up this month, be sure to take proper precautions to stay healthy and safe. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), adults 65 years or older are more prone to heat stress. This stress can be caused by prior health conditions, medications, or an inability to adjust well to quick temperature changes.
The CDC and Administration for Community Living (ACL) recommend staying cool, hydrated, and informed. Here are some tips on how you can follow these guidelines throughout the rest of the summer.
It is crucial to keep cool on extremely hot days. Taking cool showers or baths to bring your body temperature down is an efficient way to cool off after being outside on a hot day. Remember to take consistent breaks from the heat by resting in an air-conditioned space. Regular fans are not reliable in extreme cases of heat. If you do not have air conditioning at home, the CDC recommends finding a public facility that offers it, such as a mall or library.
Clothing can also be a critical part of keeping cool. Wear loose and lightweight clothing to avoid overheating and opt for light colors when possible since they do not absorb as much light.
Remembering to stay hydrated is one of the most important ways to stay healthy and safe on hot summer days. Drink water consistently throughout the day, even if you do not feel very thirsty. Bringing a water bottle with you is a great way to stay hydrated no matter where your day takes you. It is also critical on extremely hot days to avoid any strenuous activity that could increase your body temperature even more.
Make sure to stay up to date on your local weather forecast and any weather advisories in your area. Staying informed can help you plan your daily activities around the heat. For example, plan your daily walk or bike ride during the coolest part of the day.
Learn to recognize any signs of heat cramps, heat exhaustion, or heat stroke in yourself and friends and family around you. According to the CDC, some signs of heat-related illness can be muscle cramps, nausea, vomiting, or headaches. Watch out for any of these symptoms and be sure to seek immediate medical attention if you think you are experiencing heat-related illness.
By following these tips and guidelines, you can enjoy the summer while staying safe and healthy in the heat!