- Minimize Sun Exposure – Whether you are around your home, out in your yard, traveling out of town or taking part in local activities limit your time in direct sunlight as to avoid overheating, sunburn, or heat exhaustion. If you are planning to be outside wear sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun.
- Avoid Strenuous Activities – Activities which expend a lot of energy should be planned for the cooler times of the day (early morning or late evening) or moved to a cooler day. Ask for help when needed to shorten the time spent on these activities or responsibilities.
- Drink Plenty of Fluids – Unless otherwise discussed with your doctor, it is essential to stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. Drinking plenty of fluid will help from becoming overheated and physically strained.
- Stay Active – In the summertime it is important to continue exercising. If you walk, choose to walk early in the morning as to avoid long sun exposure and heat exhaustion or walk in the air-conditioned mall. If you have a dog remember to walk them in the cooler times of the day because the pavement becomes too hot for their paws as the temperature increases. Try pool exercises at locations near to you to stay fit and cool. Join exercise classes, like Young at Heart, at local community centers or senior centers in your area.
- Medications & Sun Exposure – Understand the side effects of your medications, especially those effected by sun exposure and hot weather. Read warning labels and talk with your physician or pharmacist about any concerns you may have regarding certain medications.
- Buddy System – Establish a buddy system with friends, family members, and neighbors to check on them especially in the summertime with extreme heat waves. Young children and older adults may have a more difficult time expressing their discomfort and regulation of body temperature. Hot weather effects everyone differently, friendly monitoring can be essential to the safety and health of loved ones.
- Warning Signs – Some warning signs of heat exhaustion include: unusual fatigue, dizziness, nausea and headaches. Keep an eye on those who may be more susceptible to fatigue or dehydration and remind them to stay hydrated, rest in cool places, and consult a physician with any concerns.
- Local Relief – Finding local cooling stations can help those looking for cool relief. Check the local newspaper or call your local Area Agency on Aging for places near you such as community centers, libraries, and swimming pools that may be open for free or at a low cost.