How to Keep Cool in Hot Summer Weather

1. Elderly Should Drink Enough Water to Avoid Dehydration

Dehydration causes many heat-related health concerns in seniors. It depletes the body of necessary salts and minerals.

Dehydration can cause dizziness and other health problems if you’re a senior. Hospitalization, bladder infections, kidney stones, and more can result from severe or long-term dehydration.

You must consume hydrating fluids, such as:

  • Water
  • Drinks that are 100% juice, such as pure orange or apple juice
  • Electrolyte-rich sports drinks
  • Coconut water

Beware of beverages that dehydrate you:

  • Alcohol
  • Caffeinated beverages

2. Put on the Proper Attire

When it’s hot outside, you must dress appropriately. This inconsequential decision can make a big difference. To avoid sunburns and heat exhaustion, it is important to wear clothing that allows the body to cool more quickly. Choose from:

  • Light-colored clothes
  • Fabrics and materials that are light
  • Loose-fitting clothes
  • Sunglasses or a hat

3. Avoid Going Outside in the Middle of the Day

When the weather is hot, the ideal times to be outside are early or late in the evening. That’s when the temperature is usually lower. Tips for keeping cool in the house:

  • During the day, close your windows and blinds
  • Bathe or shower in cool water
  • Use light linens and a cool room to have a good night’s sleep
  • You should turn the lights and electronics off at night

4. Keep Tabs on the Dew and Heat Index

They both are two important factors to consider when looking at weather reports, which many people do regularly. To get an idea of how the weather will feel, many weather apps and websites will display the current temperature and what it “feels like.”

It’s a number that takes humidity and current temperature into account.

According to the National Weather Service, a high dew point shows more moisture in the air. Your comfort is at risk if the dew point is greater than normal. Take into consideration the following dew point ranges:

  • Less than or equal to 55°F: Pleasant or dry
  • Between 55F – 65F: Muggy
  • Over 65 degrees Fahrenheit: Overbearingly humid and unpleasant

5. Take It Easy and Stay Out of the Sun if You Can

Make a point of reminding yourself that taking it easy over the summer can benefit your general health and energy levels. People’s bodies work overtime to stay cool in the sun.

In addition, the heart rate and metabolic rate also go up during this time of increased activity. Taking a few minutes to relax outside can leave you exhausted.

Avoid outdoor activities such as exercising, gardening, lawn mowing, and home repair when the humidity or dew point is high.

6. Eat Foods That Are Both Nutritious and Hydrating

You can stay healthy and hydrated by eating fruits, and vegetables or boosting your fluid intake. You can also chop some of these selections and add them to water to give it an extra flavor boost.

Fruits that are high in water content:

  • Watermelon
  • Strawberries
  • Grapefruit
  • Pineapple
  • Starfruit

Hydrating vegetables:

  • Cucumbers
  • Celery
  • Radishes
  • Zucchini

Bottom Line

The National Council on Aging provides a list of energy support programs if you are having difficulty paying power or cooling costs.

The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEPA) offers financial help to older citizens who cannot pay their monthly energy and cooling bills.

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