Heat Taking a Toll on Seniors in Columbus and Lagrange

July 25, 2011

Home Instead Senior Care – Columbus, Lagrange, GA advises family caregivers to keep a close eye on elderly during heat wave.

The elderly are often the most vulnerable to severe heat, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).  Why? Their bodies do not adjust as well as young people to sudden changes in temperature, they are more likely to have a chronic medical condition that changes normal body responses to heat and they are often on a prescription medicine that impairs the body’s ability to regulate its temperature or that inhibits perspiration. 

If you are a senior or caring for an elderly individual, the following tips, from Home Instead Senior Care® Columbus, Lagrange, GA office, will help seniors combat the heat:

  • Keep a glass of water in every room to quickly and easily access fluids. Drink plenty of fluids, even if you don’t feel thirsty.
  • Go through the closet and remove all heavy materials, long sleeves and dark colors. Store them until fall.
  • Set fashion trends. If you’re in need of new clothes, check out the latest fashion magazines. Look for short sleeves, lightweight rayons or cottons, and light-colored clothing that reflect the heat.
  • Stay out of the sun during the hottest times of the day. Fill up your bird feeder in the morning and water the lawn at night. Sunburn makes the job of heat dissipation that much more difficult.
  • Put down that broom! Save household chores, particularly washing and drying clothes and operating the dishwasher, for evenings, when the weather is cooler.
  • Take a nap during high heat times – between 3 and 5 p.m. in the afternoon, for instance – or find a good television program or movie to watch.
  • While you’re napping or enjoying a movie, keep shades down and blinds pulled.  Keeping a house tightly closed is more energy efficient.
  • Invite your friends over for an iced tea break. Replace coffee breaks with iced tea or lemonade breaks in an air-conditioned spot – not the patio. Staying in an air-conditioned dwelling during hot days is safer.
  • Go on a shopping spree. If you don’t have an air conditioner, or if yours is broken, spend the afternoon at the mall. You can shop or just enjoy cool drinks and a good book.
  • Put away that meat loaf recipe for the summer and track down new recipes for fruit and vegetable salads. Foods like proteins that increase metabolic heat production also increase water loss.
  • If increased use of a central air conditioning system causes higher utility bills that are a problem for your budget, consider purchasing a fan or small window unit that can cool down a home at a lower cost. In fact, window fans provide an effective way to exhaust the day’s hot air during the night.

For more information about the heat, visit the National Weather Service website and the Federal Emergency Management Agency website. Or, to learn more about Home Instead Senior Care, log on to www.homeinstead.com.

Have any additional tips to help seniors combat the heat? Please let us know below or on our Caregiver Support Group

Jason Sager, Owner Home Instead Senior Care Columus & LaGrange, Georgia

We hope this was helpful. If you have any questions or if you know of a senior who could benefit from our vast array of home care services in the Columbus and LaGrange areas , please call us in Columbus at 706.987.8600, LaGrange at 706.883.1113, or email us. We accept most long term care insurance as payment and have a full time staff of trained and certified home care personnel covering the Columbus & LaGrange, Georgia areas.

Alisa Meredith, Writer

Guest writer Alisa Meredith is a blogger and social media professional with Scalable Social Media. Every once in a while, someone at Home Instead does something that compels her to stop Tweeting and write something real! This is one of those times.

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3518 Veterans Parkway Suite D Columbus, GA 31904 Phone:706.987.8600 113 Ridley Avenue LaGrange, GA 30240 Phone:706.883.1113