Perspiration, your body’s primary way of cooling itself, decreases with age. Limiting excessive heat exposure is important for seniors to avoid heat exhaustion or even heatstroke. Beat the heat and keep yourself healthy this summer by following these simple tips:
Stay hydrated. Make sure to drink plenty of water, as it’s easy to get dehydrated in the heat. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to grab a drink; by that time, you’re already dehydrated. Avoid caffeinated drinks like coffee and soda, as they act as a diuretic and can decrease your body’s water supply.
Shield your skin. Protect your skin from sun damage by wearing wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses, and plenty of sunscreen. Reapply sunscreen every two hours to keep your skin safe from dangerous UV rays.
Find indoor activities. Just because it’s too hot to be outside doesn’t mean you must stay home. Find indoor activities in air-conditioned locations. Local malls often have morning walking programs that allow seniors to stay active while keeping cool.
Dress in layers. Layer light, breathable clothing to stay comfortable in any temperature. Layering clothing makes it easier to adjust your outfit to the temperature—whether in the heat or the air conditioning.
Turn off the oven. Keep yourself (and your kitchen) cool by preparing cold dishes this summer. Take advantage of seasonal fruits and vegetables, and make meals that don’t require heat to prepare.
Stay cool this summer by taking a few extra precautions, and help friends and family do the same by sharing these easy summer safety tips.
This article first appeared in the May 2017 edition of the HealthPerks newsletter.