Looking after the elderly in summer
Although summer is only just upon us and we are probably yet to hit the hottest day of the year, the recent spell of warm and sunny weather coupled with spending more time than normal at this time of year indoors during the Coronavirus lockdown has got us thinking about our top tips for looking after the elderly as we get deeper into the summer and the weather gets warmer.
Here are some of our best tips for keeping the elderly safe during the summer months:
This is the most obvious one, but the reason for this is that it’s also probably the most important. If anyone doesn’t keep their fluid intake up in the summer it’s dangerous, and the elderly are no different. Although do try and avoid caffeinated and alcoholic drinks which may lead to dehydration – stick to water wherever possible!
Keep where you live as cool as possible
The elderly often spend a lot of time at home so it makes sense to do everything possible to keep that area where they spend most of their time as cool as possible. You can do this by:
- Keeping shades, blinds or curtains closed during the warmest times of day.
- Open your windows at night – although make sure you do this safely.
- Wherever possible limit the use of your oven.
- Avoid keeping on lights and electrical items unless you have to.
- Invest in a good fan!
Think about your medicines
Be careful with medications you’re taking – make sure they’re firstly not going to cause any ill effects in the heat but also importantly that you’re keeping them in a safe place not exposed to extreme heat which may compromise the medication or make it degrade more quickly. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns with how you may react to your medication in the heat.
If the weather is hot then make sure you’re wearing appropriate clothing. Tips for this include:
- Choose lightweight fabrics to stay cool in the heat.
- Where you can select lighter colours.
- Wear looser fitting clothes.
Be careful with exercise
Something to be wary of as an elderly person during the summer months is over exerting yourself. It’s important to stay active of course, but be extremely careful not to exercise too much in the heat, especially the extreme heat.
If you have any questions or concerns about keeping you or an elderly friend or relative safe during the warmer summer months then one of our care home team would be happy to chat to you and answer any questions you may have. Feel free to give us a call on 01892 863559.
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